If you could go back 20, 15, 10 years would you still join the fire service if you knew then what you know now? Going through all of the heartache, family time lost, and loss of your brothers/sisters along the way?

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To answer ypur question, yes i would and have done it all over again.I quit the service two and a half years ago and have just recently rejoined the service knowing all to well that the EMS service i have joined is seemingly finding difficult to keep well trained staff due to the lack of equipment and resources.
Why didn't I join earlier?
Most definetly would do it again....I have no regrets. I have been in the service for 12 years and befor it I felt lost and had no idea what to do with my life. Thanks to my dad for urgin me along in the door of the vollie house. Once I ran my first call I knew this was for me.
Absolutely, Being a firefighter is integral to who i am.The things i've learned about myself and life in general due to the fire service shape my views of the world. in the last 17 yrs lot's of things in my life have changed, jobs, friends, women,homes,; have all come and gone. The one constant has always been a firehouse.My only 2 regrets is not pursuing a career position early in my life. now at age 33 i am , and the oppurtunities are far less due to age restrictions, i know the chances are slim at this point but i won't give up hope. Second regret is not taking advantage of more trainig oppurtunities earlier in life as well. Now with a family and house and job it's tough to get to all the courses you want to.I've gained way more brothers and sisters then i've lost.
Of course I would ,because of the new tech. knowalge and Collage courses that I could take . And knowing that I would make a BIGGER differance today ,for I could be a Chief ,Asst. Chief or even a Fire Marshall ,hell who knows maybe a Battalion Chief . I think anyone who wants this kinda fun and enjoyment should get ALL you can out of it . I would also tryed harder while in the Army to become a FF in there as well. I would have taken all the exams for EMS as well. I have 30 yrs in the service and dont regret any of it . But I do advice anybody that wants to become a FireFighter is to get ALL the EDucation in the Fire Service you can , Look , listen, and work with all your mentors . God Bless and be safe my brothers and sisters.
yes i just wish i would've joined sooner
I have been in healthcare for almost 20 years and I have only been in fire/rescue 1. Would I do it all over again? I love what I do but I believe I would have changed my profession if I could have, but now I can't because once you start it gets in your blood. I have told my boys to do something else and my oldest is going on 16 and a sophomore in high school, now he is going to be in the medical field, am I glad he chose to? Absolutely, because he has a good head on his shoulders and I know he will do whatever it takes. I love Fire/Rescue but even though I know some volunteers may not agree with me but we do this because we WANT to not because we HAVE to.
There is no question for me.....YES!!! I started over 17 years ago as a Jr. FF and have not ever left. I love the fire department, always have and always will. Our department is all volunteer, we have been growing in the 17 years. We have a long way to go still but we are on the move. My wife did not like the time it has taken way from the home family but she knew what she was getting into before we got married, she is much better now. I am Chief now and like the job but think that I should have moved back with the rest of the guys when they stepped back, they said to step forward and everyone else moved back. I wont let that happen agian...lol. Back to the question there are days when my brothers and sisters are hurting and that hurts, but the family we have is worth everything I have had to deal with. A quote that one of my instructors told me that I love is: All Fire Fighters do one Heroic act, joining the fire service, everything else is in the line of duty. I dont know the author but I feel that way and try to convey that to all the fire fighters that I come in contact with.
People ask all the time why do you do that for free? The answer is simple:

I can not imagine where my life would be today without the joys, missed dinners, and yes even the tragedies in which we find ourselves immersed.
31 years later, would not trade it for the world. The friends, the spirt, the family, would never be as it is today. Fireman are the best people in the world.
I started in 1982 right out of high school and have never regreted a day I've spent as a fire fighter. I'd do it all over again!
Without even thinking twice I would do it all over. I was pretty lucky. I was 19 and single when I joined so I was able to jump in with both boots and go balls out. When it came time to get married, I married someone from the dept so she knew the commitment involved first hand. When we finally had our son I was at a point where I was ready to to let the "kids" make all the B.S. calls and I could enjoy watching my son grow up and not running out in the middle of his games or birthdays unless it is the "big one". The only regret I have or thing I would have done different is tried to stay more on top of some of the changes that have come along since I started and tried to get more involved with some of the specialties like High Angle and Confined Space Rescue.

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