The Carson City Fire Department welcomed three new firefighter/paramedics Friday night.
The three men —Ryan Bailey, Jesse Horton and Jesse Kohler — graduated Friday from the 10-week Regional Fire Academy, along with 19 other firefighters from Central Lyon Fire Protection District, East Fork Fire Protection District, North Lake Tahoe Fire Protection District, North Tahoe Fire Protection District, Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District and Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District.
“We beat them up physically and mentally and those who are here toughed it out and you get to sit here today,” said Carson City driver operator Bryon Hunt. “But you guys will enjoy this, it is the greatest career on the planet. It is our passion and we hope it becomes yours.”
The academy instructors presented the former recruits with a multitude of awards including two merit awards, an American flag and a joke participation award for all in the academy.
The graduation speakers focused on family and fire values, stating both are inevitable and necessary in the career of a firefighter.
“On the first shift and on the last shift if you remember your training and values, you will have a great career,” said Central Lyon Fire Chief Rich Harvey.
“You spend a third of your time at the department, thousands of hours,” added Carson Battalion Chief Dan Shirey. “Your station life is your family life, your crew is like your brothers and sisters.”
Many of the captains talked about how difficult, but rewarding the job of a firefighter is.
“There will be times when things are great and you are laughing and telling stories and then there are times when things aren’t so great,” said Shirey, “but have fun at the greatest job.”
Recruits had their loved ones pin on their badges and were sworn in by their respective departments.
“Now you are going to go back to your respective departments and earn that title of firefighter or firefighter/paramedic,” said Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District Fire Chief Scott Baker. “Firefighting is a lifestyle, but what does that mean to you? Thank you.”