Posts Tagged ‘Firefighter’


The Example of the American Fire Fighter

   Posted by: Interceder    in Interceder's Thoughts

When will America take a lesson from the honor and dedication of those who have been hired to serve in the profession of fireman?

If you have not attended a Fireman’s Bell Ceremony, it should be something to put on your list of things from which to learn.


The words here are from a ceremony performed at a recent funeral.

The history of fire fighting is closely associated with the ringing of the bell. shipsbell1 It was the bell that signaled the start of duty and through the days and nights, each alarm was sounded by a bell, it called them to fight fires and to place their lives in jeopardy for the good of their fellow man. And when the fire was out and the alarm had been completed. It was the bell that signaled its end. I believe the words of Dean Alfange best describe who fire fighters are:

“I do not choose to be a common man. It is my right to be uncommon. I seek opportunity to develop whatever talents God gave me – not security. I do not wish to be a kept citizen, humbled and dulled by having the state look after me. I want to take the calculated risk; to dream and to build, to fail and to succeed. I refuse to barter incentive for a dole. I prefer the challenges of life to the guaranteed existence; the thrill of fulfillment to the stale calm of utopia. I will not trade freedom for beneficence nor my dignity for a handout. I will never cower before any earthly master nor bend to any threat. It is my heritage to stand erect, proud and unafraid; to think and act myself, enjoy the benefit of my creations and to face the world boldly and say – this, with God’s help, I have done.”

We seek strong words and symbols that give us a better understanding of our feelings when we experience a loss, and we use these symbols and words to reflect the devotion our brother had for his duties. The sounding of the bell, a special signal of three rings, three times each, represented the end of their duties and that they were returning to quarters. And now this fellow fire fighter has completed his tasks. His duties well done he has given his best. For our brother his last alarm, he has gone home.

The lessons to be learned from the words of Dean Alfange cannot be minimized. Did you find your mission?

  • Don’t be common, be uncommon.
  • The search for opportunity should supersede a perceived sense of security.
  • Embrace challenge rather than succumbing to mediocrity.
  • Do not sacrifice your freedoms for mere handouts.

When will America pursue this higher goal?

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