A few days ago a lady said "my husband is not a real firefighter, he's only a volunteer" As a vol firefighter I was realy ticked! but chose to keep my mouth shut! lol what are some of your thoughts on this statment, and how would handel it if it were said to you?


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I completely understand the volunteer concept and how it works, I was a volunteer for a period of time, which is also why I made my statements. I would venture to say there are many career FFs today who do have that volly experience, but the reverse isn't the same.


The point I'm making is the same old rhetoric gets pretty worn and outdated, while there may be those very, very few who have no other life than to await a pager call, the reality is life does get in the way of the "24/7 on call" mantra. As I mentioned, I could frankly care less if this is what someone needs to tell themselves, but the overreach such as the statement of career are just on duty for the 24 hours, does not account for all the other realities. Likewise there are those who liken the career as "doing the job for a paycheck, while vollies do it for free"....yet at the same time the concept of a true volunteer dept has also significantly decreased, with most being a paid on call dept.


Really the bottom line is there are differences despite one's personal dedication. As the cartoon on another page mentions, "it shouldn't matter" but the reality is there are differences that should be accounted for. While a volly may like to think they are always on call, realities are different, and likewise career FFs are subject to order ins and recalls as well.....and while there are probably many who would like to respond on more calls than their regular shift, they are also subject to labor laws as well, which vollies are not. Likewise, call volume alone can dictate the difference in jobs, because seriously if I were a volly with our call load, and if I were "on call 24/7", I wouldn't see any life outside of responses.


So yeah, there is a difference and that difference should be accounted for and has nothing to do with a person's dedication.

 I must agree with Capcity and John. There is a big diffrence between a Vol. and a Paid Fireman. In our training and experience. This is not a dig a Vols. I started out as a Vol. then I got hired by a small suburban dept. The by the City. 

  There are Vol. dept. that do make just as many and in some cases more than a small paid dept.

   A few years ago one of our Capt. bought some property about 40 miles west of Indy. On it was a farm  house. The Capt. didn't wan't  the house, there were 2 Vol. depts. and a small paid dept. in the area. The Capt. gave them the house to train in and do some burns.  They asked the Capt. If he would like to come do some burns, he said no, but he would like to be there when they burned it down.

   After a month or so they called and were ready to burn it down. The Capt. and another fireman from his station went to watch. They stood with one of the Vol. Chiefs, a couple Vol. Officers and the Chief of the paid dept.

   At some point when the fire had gone through most of the down  staires and partialy extended up  into the second floor and attic.  The IFD Captain turned and said to the group.  "We'd go in there and put it out."  At first the group thought he was  pulling there leg. When they realised he wasn't they couldn't believe it. "In that, no way."  was one responce.  The IFD Captain then turned to the Fireman from his station who was standing  talking to another group. "What do you think?"

  The IFD fireman said. " Go in put it out."  The group just stood there, they couldn't believe it. 

  They couldn't believe it, not because they were bad fireman, they just weren't trained to nor did they have the experience.

  It's just the way it is.    

My mom used to tell me;"If you ain't got nothing good to say, then don't say a word!" I try to live by this motto! Notice I said try! LOL You did right as this could have gotten ugly fast! As a retired State Officer, I learned a long time ago that you are invisible (To some) until you are needed! Let my break this down, You are not real until his/ Her house is burning down, She/ he is in a serious accident an your holding the "Jaws of Life" and she/ he is ill or need rescue! In all my careers I have had a "Thankless" job status, This means the Public don't appreciate you until you are needed! So let me be the first or second to tell you Thanks for your watch and the service you do!

Same here. I have a couple cousins that are WA Staters as well as knowing quite a few other guys in law enforcement. I couldn't put up with some of the stuff the PD has to deal with. It seems like people love ff's and not pd. (It couldn't possibly be from all you PD guys writing tickets when people break the law) But I really do have a lot of respect for any PD officer. You guys don't get as much credit as you deserve.

Dude, seriuosly, keep it going if it makes you happy.


I refuse to play.


Have a nice Thanksgiving.

I have a question, for Don & Jack. Are you two married?

You are a funny man... 

This is a on going topic about volunteer firefighters are not real , well we are we do the same work the same training same everything as paid profetional firefighters im on a vollunteer dept that runs over 200 calls a year we are strictly volunteer ,the figure i put it at if you dont like us volunteers when we pull up in front of your and you dont like it , fine ill take my volunteer ass right back home.

First of all, the word is PROFESSIONAL and your post is anything but professional.


Secondly, seriously, if this is the best response you have for this topic please stop posting.  You are embarassing yourself and making ALL volunteers look bad. 




where i live all but one depart in a 75 mile radious is volunteer and they all are has real has any paid department

    All any of you have to know is what I know.  That is this,



  If you know this, then your a real fireman. Paid or Vol.

Now THAT is some funny stuff!

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