Saturday, September 11, 2010

CHS Fire Academy Honor Guard conducts 9-11 Memorial Service

Widow Keepers Truck Team
Honor Guard after warmup
The evening of September 10, 2010 the CHS Fire Academy Honor Guard conducted a brief memorial to the victims lost on September 11, 2001 at the beginning of the home football game against Hunter Huss. The Black Widow was draped with a black shroud and Captain Todd Jones of the Concord Fire and Life Safety Pipe and Drums played "Amazing Grace" on the bagpipes from the sidelines. We would like to thank Captain Jones for this special tribute.

Some Powerful 9-11 Information

10 House Interview with John Morabito of Ladder 10.
Appleton Post Crescent interview. Windows Media streaming audio - 20k
AMAZING GRACE - The FDNY 10 House 9-11 Story
World Trade Tribute - Click Photo

9-11 Factoids
9 years ago today was the last "normal" day in the life of this country. Its hard to believe 2,997 people had less than a day left on this earth. That just goes to show that you need to live EVERY day like it was your last. Don't go to bed angry, tell folks in your life that you Love them, and most importantly Be Nice!

The morning of 9/11 brought the first complete callback of Fire personnel in 50 years. (12,000) While you can NEVER put a price on the 343 FDNY personnel, here is something you can put a price on-Twenty-five engines, 15 ladder companies, numerous special units, 133 police vehicles and ambulances were destroyed or severely damaged. Estimates of the cost of vehicles lost by the Police and Fire departments are close to $47 million.

By 0900, on an average day, 35,000 people were at their desks in both towers. Unfortunately, the 16 miles of staircases and 828 exit doors could not handle the influx of people. Meanwhile, at the Pentagon, the portion that was damaged during the attack was under renovation and mostly empty. There would have been so many more fatalities, if this had not been the case.

Alexandria County FD was first on scene at the Pentagon on 9/11. They staff 10 Engines and 2 Aerials. While they pulled a full box, it was the 2 ARFF trucks, one from Fort Meyers and one from Dulles Int. Airport, that knocked the bulk of the fire out within 7 minutes.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Honor Guard Presents the Colors at the First Home Football Game

Seniors Tabbi Beck and Shannon Arthur visit with the Honor Guard.
Tabbi is the CHSFA Assistant Chief
and a Vol. FF with Mt. Mitchell VFD
Shannon took Fire Science 2 last year and is a Vol. FF with Coldwater VFD

The CHSFA Honor Guard presented the Colors at the first Home Football game on Friday night Sept. 3, 2010.

The Honor Guard would like to welcome their newest member Miss Amber Cline who carries the Fire Axe and stepped up to serve as the drillmaster for the group.

The Honor Guard performed with the CHS Marching Band and staged their new Fire Apparatus, "The Black Widow" at the end of the track for people to see.
During the football game, The Black Widow celebrated each touchdown with lights, siren, and air horn. Chief Barlow even celebrated the only East Rowan touchdown. Maybe that was because he once taught at that school or possibly because it was the opposing teams only touchdown and he did not want them to feel left out.


The Black Widow's lighting package

CHSFA Receives New Fire Apparatus and Conducts a Wet Down Ceremony and Dedication

Fire Commissioner Black adresses the gathering

This Post is a work in progress. As we get more photos and video in, we will continue to add to this Post. If you have photos or video of this event, and would be willing to share them, please send them to Chief Barlow at or contact me to arrange for the images to be picked up on CD or Flash Drive. Thank You in advance for your help with this!

On Friday Sept. 3, 2010, the CHSFA took delivery of their new Fire Apparatus. This apparatus is a 1973 American LaFrance Triple Combination Pumper - Hose Wagon. The Reserve Engine Company is being leased from the City of Concord. This truck will be used as a Training Tool, as a Parade Piece, and will also provide Spirit at the Home Football Games this year. The Honor Guard will base their operations from this unit in the Football Stadium. The "Black Widow" will provide lots of opportunity for recruits to demonstrate "Pride and Ownership" whenever they use this wonderful new addition to the Academy.
Concord Fire Chief Randy Holloway spoke about the Fire Department's willingness to support and partner with this program and shared that “In two short years, this has become the model program in North Carolina.” “We look forward to many years of cooperation.”
He added that a registry will be put on the fire truck for students who use it to add their names. In the future, Holloway hopes the city will create a museum featuring the fire department. He said The Black Widow and the registry with the students’ names would be a great addition to the fire department’s history.
Chief Holloway also said that he had heard that some might like to paint the apparatus Black and Gold. He advised against repainting, but provided CHSFA with a bag of spider web, spider stickers, etc. for us to use in decorating the vehicle.

As Fire Commissioner Black and Ms. Lisa Conger donned their gear, the CHS Cheerleaders - The Spider Girls energized the crowd with the cheer "Get Fired Up".

Similar to the Navy tradition of christening a ship, the Fire Service, began wetting down their apparatus prior to it being placed in service and whenever the equipment was transferred to another department or firehouse. The wetting down of the Apparatus and Crew with water symbolizes the Protection from Fire that all fire crews and apparatus need from the intensity of fire and to keep them safe. Often firefighters and apparatus from neighboring towns will ritualistically commission a new fire apparatus by anointing it with water sprayed from the visitors' firefighting equipment.
With our Wet Down, we had the Director of the Cabarrus County Schools Career and Technical Education program - Ms. Lisa Conger, and our Principal - Mrs. Carla Black, don Firefighter Turnout Coats, Boots, and Helmets and wet down the Apparatus while the recruits washed the rig. With the temperature hovering around the century mark, many observers wished that they could assist in order to cool off.

of Reserve Engine #3

The well known and highly respected Fire Chief of Phoenix, Arizona - Chief Alan Brunacini posted signs at all of the Fire Stations in that city stating that:
It is with this philosophy and “Pride and Ownership” that the Concord High School Fire Academy along with its Partner Agency Dedicate this 1973 American LaFrance Triple Combination Pumper – Hose Wagon - Reserve Engine # 3 to the proper Education of our students.
We now will officially name her – “The Black Widow”

New ID Cards for the CHSFA

SampleSample ID Card
On Thursday, September 2, 2010 Captain Jeff "Bobo" Smith and his crew from Engine 3 spent the day at CHSFA making Accountability and ID Cards for all members. These new cards replace the plastic "Key Chain" style that we used previously. These are the same cards that Concord Fire and Life Safety uses and includes our Logo, Photo, Full Name, Rank, and Birth Date, If a recruit is on the Honor Guard, that title is displayed under the CHSFA logo. These are another source of our "Pride and Ownership". Thank you once again, to our partner agency Concord Fire and Life Safety and Captain Smith and his crew on Engine 3.

Chief Roger Cline Visits and Shares the Concord Fire Recruit Guidon

Concord Fire Recruit Class Guidon

Concord Department of Fire and Life Safety Chief of Training - Mr. Roger Cline visited CHSFA on Friday Aug. 27, 2010 to share his support of the CHS Fire Academy Program. Chief Cline spoke frankly about the "wonderful opportunity that the recruits have by being a part of this outstanding program that is a model for the state". Chief Cline further explained that not only do these recruits have an advantage by being in this program, but that they are paving the way for the program to be even better as we continue on.

Chief Cline brought the Concord Fire and Life Safety Recruit Class Guidon with him and shared the significance of the Guidon and how it teaches accountability. The CHSFA is in the process of getting a Guidon for the CHSFA.

OSFM Visits CHSFA on the 2nd Day of School

On Thursday August 26th, the Office of the State Fire Marshal visited the CHSFA to go over all of our operating policies, and to make sure everyone was operating on the same page. The visit was also to see how well the Fire Academy has grown since the beginning of the Pilot program. The visitors included Mr. Steve Sloan and Scott Hackler of the OSFM. Also attending this meeting were Ms. Lisa Conger, Mrs. Shirley Phifer, Mr. Jerry Hathcock, Chief Ray Allen, and Captain Todd Eury of Concord Fire and Life Safety.

Easton Tucker - Junior Junior Firefighter Visits CHSFA

On August 24th Mister Easton Tucker stopped by to inspect the Concord High School Fire Academy and see if the Academy classroom was ready for class the next morning. After looking at everything in the class, and trying on the turnout gear, Easton gave Chief Barlow his definite approval. The CHSFA looks forward to many more visits from Easton.