Drinking from a hydrant was the best way to explain the opening of the 2012 Baltimore Firehouse Expo in Baltimore. You try to get just a sip and instead you have 500 GPM of water flowing full force. Within the first 5 minutes of the show, we had over 30 people in our booth. What was even more impressive was that most people were being told to see our booth from firefighters that bought our illuminating products over the last year.
The Fire Critic (Rhett Fleitz) and The Iron Fireman (Willie Wines) wore their signature matching kilts and leather helmets as they were mobbed by their fans asking for autographs and getting personal demonstrations of how MN8 Foxfire helps firefighters by reducing disorientation, increasing accountability and illuminating search activities.
I was absolutely humbled not only our large crowds and strong sales, but also by hearing the numerous stories about how many firefighters are currently using our products and how much Foxfire has helped them be better and safer firefighters.
We had several very special visitors that first day such as the winner of the MN8 Foxfire FDIC T-Shirt contest, Donnie Wedding and the girls from the greatest bar in the world, PBR Baltimore. They want us to illuminate their shirts and hot pants !!!!
As the first day wrapped up, I changed out of my stuffy jeans and button down shirt and got to break out my new bunker kilt. I could not let Willie and Rhett be the only one to “let it all hang out”. We walked from the convention center to the FOOLS Bash and at Baltimore’s Powerplant Live. We had several people ask to get their picture taken with us. I guess Baltimore is not used to seeing men in kilts and firefighter helmets walking down the street....
The event was awesome complete with cornhole games, a dunk booth with very hot scantly clad women, pipes and drums and a torrential rainstorm. Never the less the firefighters were not about to let it rain on our parade !
The men and women of the Baltimore Fools chapter did a great job and fun was had by all. Especially watching the PBR girls dance on the tables!
The evening would have not been complete without having one of the PBR girls ride the mechanical bull complete with a MN8-Foxfire illuminating helmet !
The next day of the show was the same as the first day with big crowds, brisk sales and an energy unmatched by any other booth. We had several VIP's stop in such as Chief Bashoor of Prince George County FD, Capt. Morris of FDNY's Rescue 1 and even the media mogel himself, Mr. Dave Statter.
I finally had the chance to walk the floor for a few minutes and I had heard that FDNY’s Rescue 2 in Brooklyn had a booth. Visiting their booth was an honor. While there I checked on how all the Foxfire gear was holding up. I was both excited and honored to see FF Rob Weidman shaking hands with everyone.
As I’m sure most of you remember, FF Weidman was critically burned several months ago while battling a very bad fire at a Brooklyn brownstone.
MN8-Foxfire along with the Iron fireman and Fire Critic not only raised money for him, we also presented the check to his captain, Liam Flaherty at their Brooklyn quarters. Meeting with FF Weidman and hearing his heartfelt appreciation was one of the most memorable moments I have had since starting MN8. Our highest calling in the fire service is to help our brothers. These men of FDNY’s Rescue 2 have shown all of us the importance of brotherhood and professionalism that all of us in the fire service should strive to emulate.
I can’t believe it’s been a year since our last visit to Baltimore for the Firehouse Expo. I remember last year's great show, the only thing hotter than our booth was the record setting high temperatures. We will be joined again by my dear friends and brothers Capt. Willie Wines (Ironfiremen ) and Lt. Rhett Fleitz (Firecritic). It takes a lot to put one of these shows together. There is no way we could do it without their help and a few other members of the MN8 Foxfire Boots on the Street team along some new and old members of the MN8-Foxfire team. If you are attending the show make sure to visit us at Booth 123 and also meet up with us Thursday night at the Powerplant Live for the Baltimore FOOLS Brotherhood Bash
This year’s show will be a little different for us as we will be unveiling the new MN8 Foxfire mobile showroom/trailer. We wanted to find a way to transport not only our supplies but also a way to demonstrate our products in complete darkness. Walking in the dark trailer is a great way to see first hand how our products increase visibility by illuminating search areas, reduce disorientation and increase accountability of both tools and personnel. Hopefully, you will have a chance to see the trailer soon. If we make it to your area we will do our best to stop by. As we were putting some last minute touches on our new trailer/mobile show room Saturday, I could not wait to get on the road. Even though we were supposed to leave on Monday morning, our Office Manager Kelly I decided to post on Facebook seeing if any firefighters between Cincinnati and Baltimore might like us to stop in for a quick visit. The response was overwhelming, in less then a few hours we had several requests lined up.
Our first visit was with longtime MN8 Foxfire supporter and Facebook fan Jimmy Weeks of Martins Ferry, OH fire department. We were absolutely overwhelmed when we pulled up to their station and were greeted by over two dozen members of the Martin’s Ferry Fire Department and even some of their family. It was so heartening to see that our efforts to reach all corners of the firefighting community is being touched when several helmets in the department already had our helmet bands. After a great discussion about their upcoming 125th Anniversary and a demonstration of some of our other products, a few of their senior men invited us to visit their very impressive tower truck. We were next off the the great state of Pennsylvania to visit Joe Kriel of the Baldwin (PA) fire department, located on the direct border of Pittsburgh, PA.
Once again were were absolutely humbled to see over a dozen of his brother and sisters (along with several of their kids) waiting for us on the apron as we pulled up in front of their fire station. Just like Harper’s Ferry, they could not have been more excited to see our other illuminating products. By the time we left, a small line formed as several of them purchased products right on site. Kelly and several of the other firefighters watched in amusement as I did everything possible to only drive the trailer forward because I have yet to figure out how to back it up....
After a quick night in beautiful Pittsburgh, PA, we were off bright and early to continue of trip. This next stop was off to Star City Volunteer Fire Department next to Morgantown, WV. Again we were met with open arms and were given a tour of the station and even got to meet their station Dalmatian, Pierce.
From Morgantown is was off to the east past the beautiful scenery of Maryland and West Virginia. We even had the opportunity to take a quick hike on the Appalachian Trail when it crossed over Interstate 70 in Hagerstown.
The night finished up wit a great meal at my biological brothers, Adam’s house. We were treated to an incredible meal of slowed cooked pork shoulder and homemade bread. I even got some quality time to visit with my precious neice and nephew. It always great to break bread with family, especially when you are on the road.
During my recent visit to Vancouver for the Fire Chiefs of British Columbia conference, I had the honor to meet and speak with Wayne Jasper. Wayne is the Director & LODD Chairman of the CFFF (Canadian Fallen Firefighters Foundation). Wayne is one of those people you meet that from the second you meet him, you know there is something unique about him. You could look in his eyes and see both the intensity and compassion he has for serving his fellow firefighters and especially the families of the fallen.
I was very moved by our conversations on how we are all connected by our service to the fire industry. Wayne and I had several great discussions both at the show and later at dinner on how innovative new technology like MN8-Foxfire helps firefighters. We also talked about how the growth of synthetic combustibles have increased the hazards to firefighters. It seems as advanced as our gear, education, and training is, we are still losing too many of our brothers to unnecessary injuries. Even though we all accept the risks that go in to this job, it seems like the most dangerous thing we encounter is not fire or cheap construction but rather a very silent and invisible hazard; cancer.
Unlike smoke, fire, and collapsing building, cancer does not kill you quickly. Rather it sometimes raises its ugly head later in life and in some cases long after we put away our turnout gear for the last time. What is even more frustrating is that almost all types of cancers created from exposures on the fire ground are preventable. Early in my career, I wanted to look tough by fighting auto fires without my mask and taking my mask off during overhaul. After learning more about how dangerous this is and meeting firefighting cancer survivors like Scott Estrada of Cal Fire, I no longer make those types of poor decisions.
WEARING YOUR MASK is one of the best ways to ensure that cancer will not cut your life short as you enjoy retirement or during your later years in the fire service.
To learn more about programs for cancer education, awareness, and prevention please take some time to visit the:
Fire Fighter Cancer Foundation
One thing that Wayne shared with me is how the CFFF treats cancer deaths, even during retirement, as a LODD. When a firefighter goes down as the result of their service even during retirement, Wayne explained that the CFFF will be there for their family.
Our conversation shifted to the importance of brotherhood and how Wayne said how impressed the Canadian fire service was when during a multiple LODD several years ago a contingent of the FDNY helped cover a shift for a rural Canadian fire department. He also talked about how Canadian firefighters have attended multiple 9/11 events (several even voulteered at the WTC rubble pile) and US LODDs.
I was both embarrassed and frustrated to hear that there was virtually no representation from US firefighters (the last event had only two firefighters from the US in attendance) during the last several national Canadian Fallen Firefighter ceremonies. Wayne told me about their national memorial service in the Canadian capitol of Ottawa. We have over 10 times more firefighters in the US than they have in Canada. They make the trip to the US for LODD funerals, they buy our products and they support our causes. In a few months from now on Sept. 9th they will dedicate the national Canadian firefighter’s memorial in Ottawa. I will be making the trip in my class A’s. The badge on my chest will represent my department but the flag on my shoulder will represent my beloved country. I would be honored if we could field a big presence from the US. It would be great to spend some time with you and introduce you to our brothers up north.
With that in mind MN8-Foxfire along with the help of Capt. Willie Wines of the IronFiremen Blog will be arranging a bus trip to Ottawa for this special event. If you can make it, please do. Click here to buy a seat on the bus that leaves from Cincinnati, Ohio on Friday 9/7 travels up I-75 to Detroit, MI to Ottawa comes back early Monday 9/10. The ticket will include lodging, breakfast and travel. You will need a valid passport and not have a criminal record. There will even be a few extras from MN8-Foxfire and a few other surprises in store.
Again, click the link below to purchase your tickets for this very exciting trip:
A few weeks ago, I had the the privilege to visit two fire departments in the same week. On the outside they looked very different but the reality is they were both almost identical. I had the chance to spend a 24 hour shift with the men and women of the Detroit Fire Department.
Just a few days later, I had the opportunity to visit the incredible men and women of the Hilton Head Island Fire Department. Although their communities, budgets, apparatus, and gear could not be more different there were a few things that were identical; pride, brotherhood, respect for others, professionalism, and the firefighter tradition of always helping others.
This trip was a little different than most of my other trips, this trip's primary purpose was not to share Foxfire’s advanced photoluminescent technology that helps reduce disorientation and increases accountability but it was rather our annual family vacation to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina.
I always like to visit local fire departments no matter were I go and this trip was no exception. My 8 year old son Bryce and I were invited to have breakfast, though Facebook, with the great guys of Truck 6 and Firefighter Jeremy Yerkes. Jeremy, in my opinion, has one of the best jobs in the fire-service; Tillerman.
It was more than just breakfast, it was a meal that was so immense I could not eat until that evening. Southern hospitality was on full display with homemade biscuits and gravy, sausage, bacon, hash browns, eggs, etc. I not only felt like I was part of their family but my son Bryce was in heaven, having a warrior’s breakfast and being able to watch Spongebob in a recliner !
I was told by my good friends and brothers Capt. Willie Wines of Iron Firemen Blog and Lt. Rhett Fleitz of The Fire Critic Blog that I needed to visit Battalion Chief Mick Mayers of the Hilton Head Fire Department. Chief Mayer's has a great blog Firefighter Zen and I was particularly impressed with his recent series on "Leadership That Matters." His series talks about several different themes that separate mediocrity from greatness in almost all areas of the fire service.
A few days later, Chief Mayers picked me up from our hotel in his staff car and took me on a tour visiting each of the seven stations on the island. Chief Mayers has been with the Hilton Head Island FD for several decades, he has seen a department and community grow from a small town department to a model department that virtually all of us could learn from. Of all the departments I have visited throughout the US and abroad, Hilton Head Island FD should be the model for the fire service. I learned a lot from Chief Mayers on not just being a better fire leader but also on being a great father, husband and person. Hilton Head Island Fire Department has highly motivated and trained members, state of the art fire apparatus, and top of the line facilities. What is even more impressive is that each apparatus is identically set up. When you see any engine or ladder on the island you know that every compartment has the same tools/equipment in the same place.
Each station is also the same so if you are covering another station you know the flow of the building. The outstanding service of the Hilton Head Island Fire Department has not gone unnoticed, as they recently received a very special honor of becoming one of 148 global fire departments to be internationaly accredited.
One of the greatest prides I have in the fire service is getting to meet such incredible brother firefighters that go so far out of their way to help a stranger. In this particular case, I got to witness a rescue, not the type of rescue we typically see but in this situation the grab was a few baby birds that could not have been more than a few days old. When Chief Moore and I went to the station to see the new visitors, the firefighters had set up a mobile “baby bird intensive care unit” equipped with syringes, catheters full of warm milk, a hot pad, several towels, and even some fresh worms cut up in bite sized pieces.
These rough and tumble firefighters could have just left them in the bucket that they found them in and let mother nature take it’s course but they went above and beyond. They saw something in need and they did what firefighters are supposed to do, they helped.
The MN8 Foxfire caravan pulled into the Indianapolis Convention Center wednesday afternoon. We knew it would be a good show when we already had people waiting to talk to us before we even started unpacking our booth.
Later back at the hotel we met up with our celebrity spokesmen Lt. Rhet Flietz ( www.thefirecritic.com) and Capt. Willie Wines (www.ironfiremen.com)
They were very proud to be showing off their brand new kilts. I could not be left out so one of their friends who made the drive with them, Big Mike, of the Renegade Pipes and Drums offered me a kilt to wear.
We met up with the rest of our crew and headed out to the F.O.O.L.S. outdoor party. It was so great seeing several people in the crowd wearing their Foxfire illuminating t- shirts. Rhett and Willie were mobbed like celebrities, everybody wanted their pictures with them. These two giants in the fire service are the real deal. They don’t know a stranger. Every firefighter they meet is greeted as “hey brother.”
The first day of the show was great! A few of us got to the booth several hours before the start and we already had a constant stream of people. So many people were lined up that some had to come back two and three times just to get a demo. We completely sold out of all of our illuminating tetrahedrons and almost sold all of the FDIC winning T-shirts made by firefighter Donald Wedding on the first day.
Some of the greatest comments of the day were from the firefighters that bought our products last year and were now bringing their fellow firefighters over to show them the “magic” as some people called it.
That night we had a chance for our entire team to unwind at one of my favorite restaurants, Adobo. We rented an entire room and spent the night sharing laughs, dancing to the Mariachi bands, eating table-side made guacamole and drinks, lots of fresh made margaritas.
The next two days were just like the first two, action packed and a constant stream of distributors, firefighters, and others wanting to hang out with the MN8-Foxfire team and to learn more about how our advanced photoluminescent technologies can help increase visibility, reduce disorientation and improve accountability. We even were interviewed by Mike Brooks of CNN Headline News.
The last day, we signed up for our new booth for next years show and after speaking with the person at the conference, she made a comment, “So you guys are the ones we’ve been hearing about that has been so busy that you've been blocking the aisles with all your crowds. Outside of the special visit from the “Swamp People” and the bikini girls we were one of the busiest booths at the show."
When I look back on the show and what we have accomplished since last year, I tried to figure out how we could have gained so much traction so fast and the answer is simple. The reason is something we have talked about many times before. We are taking an innovative technology and making a difference in the safety of our brothers. Every dollar we make goes back into growing our mission of "By firefighters for firefighters." We are not a huge corporation that can spend millions of marketing dollars on big trade-show booths and full page advertisements. We are just a bunch of firefighters trying to look out for each other.
We’re packed and headed out today for the Fire Department Instructor’s Conference (FDIC) in Indianapolis. We’ve got our blackout tent ready (so people can see the illumination from our products in the dark), we’ve got firefighters who have used the products ready to demonstrate and talk about them and we’ve got lots of products available for purchase. We’ll also be announcing the winner of our T-shirt design contest, talking about our Boots on the Street program, sharing news about some collaborations we’ll being telling you about soon and talking about our upcoming products. If you’re going, be sure to visit us at the MN8-Foxfire Booth #3026 of the Indiana Convention Center to learn more about how Foxfire illuminating products help firefighters reduce disorientation, improve accountability and increase visibility.
You might even find a couple of “celebrities” hanging around our booth.
That’s right, Lt. Rhett Fleitz of the Fire Critic blog (FireCritic.com) and Captain Willie Wines Jr. of the Wooden Ladders and Iron Firemen blog (IronFiremen.com) will be spending time at our booth when they’re not signing autographs or posing for photos.
Seriously, our entire MN8-Foxfire team has the highest respect for Rhett and Willie. They are truly good friends and great supporters of fellow firefighters and the firefighting industry. I’ve been greatly touched that they’ve become huge fans of Foxfire products and supporters of our goals of keeping our fellow firefighters safe.
It seems like we’ve been friends for a very long time. But it’s only been a year. In fact, our friendship began a year ago-at FDIC. Today, I’d like to share that story with you.
We stalked Rhett. Well, sort of. Here’s what happened: Sometime before FDIC, we’d contacted Rhett about doing a product review of our Foxfire illuminating helmet band. Keep in mind that MN8-Foxfire had just been launched months before last year’s FDIC and at that time our only products were the Foxfire illuminating helmet band and the Foxfire illuminating do-it-yourself coating kit. About a week before FDIC, Rhett published his review of the helmet bands and it was published on his blog.
His review was very positive, you can read it here
After arriving in Indianapolis, the night before FDIC began we decided to find Rhett. As you probably know, he’s big into social media. So Amy, who heads up marketing and public relations for MN8-Foxfire and I started tracking Rhett’s whereabouts via Twitter and Foursquare. When he checked into a downtown Indianapolis BBQ restaurant, I headed over to meet him and thank him for his recent review. Sure enough, I found him along with Captain Willie and Dave Statter (statter911.com), another firefighter industry blogger. And the friendships began.
In the year since FDIC 2011, Rhett, Willie and I have spent a lot of time together. When we unexpectedly didn’t have enough staffing at last year’s Firehouse Expo in Baltimore, Willie lent a hand and helped work at the MN8-Foxfire booth. With his credibility and reputation in the fire industry, it was an honor to have him work with us. Willie also helped us “work the booth” at Fire Rescue International in Atlanta last year. Rhett was also at both of these shows, talking up our products in between his Fire Critic gigs.
I guess we help each other out. When Willie and Rhett called me last year asking if MN8-Foxfire would be willing to donate helmet bands to the climbers of a 9/11 stair climb they were participating in, we immediately agreed, creating some specially designed helmet bands specifically for that event.
During the past year, Willie, Rhett and I also did some traveling together, heading to New York City twice, and visiting numerous fire stations while we were there. On our last New York Trip, we teamed up to establish a joint fundraiser to raise money for two injured firefighters from FDNY Rescue 2, a station we’d visited on our first trip.
Rhett and Willie also visited the MN8-Foxfire headquarters in Cincinnati a couple of times during the past year. On one of these visits the three of us trained in a flashover simulator in our turnout gear, along with catching a Cincinnati vs. W. Virginia football game together.
In just one year, we’ve shared too many experiences and fun times to share in just one blog post. Bottom line is that these are really great “brothers” and two men I’m honored to call good friends. If you haven’t met them before, I hope you get the chance talk with them at FDIC or some other time in the future, because they all around great guys who are worth getting to know. If you have any experiences you’d like to share about Rhett and Willie, we’d love to hear those too!
When vising the Big Apple one thing is for certain, you can’t find a hotel without breaking the bank. I travel quite often and stay in many hotels. I would much rather spend the company's money on innovative advanced photo-luminescent products rather than swanky hotels. I found a good deal on a nice hotel in Hoboken, NJ that had a great view of Manhattan and the contstruction of the Freedom Tower located on the site of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. The hotel is also located on the famous Hudson River right in front of where Capt. Sullinberg heroicly landed US Airways flight 1549 in 2009.
On this trip I was joined by my dear friends and brothers Willie Wines of the Ironfiremen.com and Rhett Flietz of the Firecritic.com.
Read Iron Firemen's blogs about this trip:
IronFiremen Part 1
IronFiremen Part 2
IronFiremen Part 3
IronFiremen Part 4
Read The Fire Critic's blogs about this trip here:
FireCritic Part 1
Fire Critic Part 2
We did what any firefighter would do upon arrival of a new city; say hello to the firefighters at the nearest firehouses and visit one of the local watering holes. We visited the great guys of Hoboken FD and were given a tour of their historic and beautiful station. The architecture and history of this and the other stations around Hoboken were very impressive! They looked like what a fire station should look like. The Battalion Chief was on duty and invited us to vist one of their other houses the following morning. The next morning we picked up some authentic New York style bagels for the crew. We had a great tour of the house and even met the Chief. We were all very humbled when they told us that they had not only heard of Foxfire and our advanced photo-luminescent products but they were interested in purchasing. They told us that Frank Sinatra’s dad used to be a firefighter out of their house. As we were leaving, the Battalion Chief pointed to a metal strip on the floor by the stairs. He told us it was for the guys to scrape off the horse Sh!t from the bottom of their boots before they went upstairs!
The next day we were off to visit several landmarks of the FDNY. We visited "Red Square" FDNY's incredible Fleet Service Divison that takes up several city blocks with apparatus as far as the eye could see. They even had a small museum with several antique apparatus'.
From there we headed to the tool central for FDNY. They had more tools in their warehouse than most fire departments have in their entire city.
Next we were off to Randall Island home of FDNY’s famous training facility, the Rock. The world facility does not do it justice, it is an entire city.
The history and scope of this place was breathtaking. They have an entire multi-story city block recreated indoors. Before you enter into the headquarters building you are greeted by a pull-up bar connecting several sacred rusted --beams from the World Trade Center. I managed to heave my overweight/balding frame onto the bar and busted out a few pull-ups before we entered.
I will not forget walking through these hollowed halls. We even saw Capt. Morris of Rescue 1 in the hallway and he remembered us from our last visit a few months earlier. He even told us he still has our illuminating helmet band.
The shrines honoring the men of September 11 and other fallen brothers of the FDNY were very moving. I was particularly drawn to the plaque from the Green Berets who helped distribute World Trade Center wreckage throughout Afghanistan as they brought our long arm of justice to the terrorists who murdered the brave 343 and innocent civilians.
We finished the day back at the World Trade center. We visted our friends at the legendary “Ten House” and they too remebered us and told us how much they liked our illuminating products we dropped off several months prior. We finished off the night, yet again, raising a glass at the famous O’Hara’s pub that still proudly stands in the former shadows of the Twin Towers; while enjoying a grand view of the Freedom Tower as it rises from the sacred ground of the WTC.
I have the honor to visit fire department from all over the US and I can honestly say that it is such a privilege to meet brothers from all over our nation. No matter where I go and who I meet, I still get excited every time I walk in to a new station.
This recent trip brought me back to New York city. I was joined by my dear friends and brothers Willie Wines of http://ironfiremen.com/ and Rhet Fleitz of http://firecritic.com/. On our last visit we had the chance to visit with many of the rescue companies and spent quite a bit of time with the warriors of Rescue 2, led by Capt. Liam Flaherty.
Capt. Flaherty is the youngest rescue captain in the history of the FDNY and one of my personal heroes. We met almost a year ago at Firehouse World in San Diego. He offered to have his elite men of Rescue 2 in Brooklyn evaluate our advanced photo-luminescent products. We all were horrified to see the video of the flash-over a few weeks ago in Brooklyn in which FF’s Gersbeck and Weidman (pictured below)were injured in a flashover at a brownstone fire in Brooklyn.
At MN8-Foxfire our highest calling and most important goal is for us to help our firefighting brothers all over the world. Why? Because we are all brothers. Volunteer, paid on call, full time, union, etc. it doesn’t matter. When one of us hurts, we all hurt. When one of us fall we all stumble. Fire does not differentiate between black or white, volley or full time, big city or small.
We are honored to donate to various firefighter causes throughout the year not because we are asked but because it is the right thing to do. After all, we are our brothers keeper. We could not visit our friends and brothers of Rescue 2 on this trip and not do something for the brave warriors who weree injured. Willie, Rhett, and I, along with many other leaders in the firefighter community like Statter 911, and Firefighter Nation helped promote this opportunity to help both the injured firefighters and their families. We received donations from all over the country, MN8-Foxfire donated 50% of all of our sales that week.
On Tuesday, we had the privilage to join the brave men of Rescue 2 at the their house and present them with a check for over $2,300. Capt. Flaherty and his men could not have been more gracious and appreciative. They wanted us to pass on their heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all of you that supported their crew with thoughts, prayers and donations. They brewed a fresh pot of coffee for us and even took us on a very special tour of the 6 day old brand new Ferra Rescue truck.
To be continued....
A term used over and over again in the fire industry. There have been many blog posts and discussions about brotherhood. There are probably as many definitions of what brotherhood means as there are firefighters. The term is brotherhood, not friend or acquaintance. I remember my dad once telling me that, "you can choose your friends but you can’t choose your family." You don’t have to like your brother, you don’t choose your brother, they are family. Each of us has our own meanings of the word but one thing that needs no interpretation is that when a brother is in need, you help. Firefighting has a long tradition of helping out our brothers when something bad happens.
MN8-Foxfire's mission is “by firefighters for firefighters” and we will never forget our brothers.
Many of you know that I have had the honor and privilege to travel the world meeting firefighters from all over as I represent MN8-Foxfire.
Almost a year ago to the day, I had the privilege to meet Capt. Liam Flaherty of FDNY’s Rescue 2 in Brooklyn. I met Capt. Flaherty as he was representing FDNY’s Emerald Society Pipes and Drums at the Firehouse World trade-show in San Diego, CA. We had the opportunity to spend a bit of time at the trade-show and later at a great Irish bar in downtown San Diego. Over a few pints of Guiness and shots of Jameson, I told him about my vision for MN8-Foxfire and how our advanced photoluminescent products can help our brothers by increasing accountability of tools and each other while also reducing disorientation. He offered to evaluate some of our products and give me his and his crew’s feedback.
For those of you who read this blog on a regular basis you will know that I made a trip out to New York City a few months ago with Rhett Fleitz, aka The Fire Critic and Willie Wines, The Iron Fireman. One of our stops was to visit Rescue 2 and Capt. Flaherty.
They greeted us with open arms and shared with us how much they liked Foxfire products and how it has helped them locate their tools in the dark. Hanging out with these heroes and leaders in the fire service while hearing about how our advanced photoluminescent technology has helped them has been one of the proudest moments I have had since starting MN8-Foxfire.
A few weeks ago many of you heard and saw video of the dramatic bailout in Brooklyn.
It was non-other than two members of Rescue 2 that were critically injured. They survived for several reasons. As you you watch that dramatic video, you can see the events unfold. The firefighter opens the window to find his egress ladder and the ladder operator assists him by extinguishing his flames and assisting him down the stick, and then you can see the engine company make a knockdown. As horrifying as this video is to watch, it is an incredible testament to the importance of training, situational awareness, modern PPE, and brotherhood.
Wille, Rhett and myself will be going back to New York at the end of the month to visit again with the FDNY and specifically Rescue 2. Willie had a great idea that we should try and do something special for these two brave firefighters of Rescue 2 who were injured. After all, thats what brothers do, we help each other. Starting on 1/23/12 at 7:00AM, we are going to donate 50% of everything sold on our web-store to the Rescue 2 May Day fund. You can find our web-store by going www.mn8products.com. If you don’t want to buy anything we will also give you the option to make a donation via credit card or PayPal. This offer will expire on at midnight on Monday 1/30/12 so the three of us can personally present a check when we visit Rescue 2 in person on Feb. 1st.
After all we are all one big family, and when your family needs help, you help.