Saturday, January 29, 2011

Golf in Myrtle Beach Anyone?

If anyone or a team is interested in playing golf in Myrtle Beach on February 15, the National Fallen Firefighters' Foundation is having a tournament! The entry fee is $100 per player, and the proceeds go to The National Fallen Firefighters' Foundation Spouses' & Children's scholarship fund. The $100 includes all golf & cart fees, a welcome goody bag, box lunch at the course, and a prime rib buffet style supper at Calli Baker's Firehouse Bar & Grill. There will be a new Buick given away for the first hole in one on hole #2, a 50/50 giveaway, silent auction and more surprises as well. If anyone is interested, go to to register or call Jon Marsh at (843) 997-8592 if you have any questions. This is all for a good cause and is a super deal for a day of golf at the beach!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Engine 11 Gets a Temporary Home!

Engine 302 and Engine 11
With the upcoming renovations at Station 12, there was a need to make room at Station 16 for Engine 112 to be quartered for a month. So, we are thankful to Chief Schrade and our pals at St. Andrews for making space for us to move Engine 11 for a while.  We moved her to SAFD Station 2 this afternoon where she'll remain under the watchful eyes of our friends for about a month. Thanks to all of you for your help!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

With Deepest Sympathy......................

We extend our heartfelt sympathy to the family of Mrs. Doris Shriver, the mother of CFD Battalion Chief Ricky Shriver and to the family of Mrs. Miriam Seyle, widow of former CFD Asst. Chief Irving Seyle in their passing this week.  

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Helping Out a Brother

Local IOP firefighter Seth Bacon was shocked when he found out that he had been diagnosed with cancer Sept. 1. He had surgery the very next day. Seth, 32, said, “Wow, I can’t believe this is happening to me. It is usually one of the things you read about, but it is not supposed to happen to you.” But unfortunately it had and in December at MUSC, Bacon found out from doctors that the cancer had spread to his lymph nodes.

Seth has been a firefighter the past 10 years and is scheduled to have major abdominal surgery next month. Opposed to having chemotherapy, he has opted for surgery, saying, “hopefully the surgery will be successful, so that we can nip the cancer in the bud.” The surgery could last from 4-14 hours and he could be in the hospital for 4-7 days. “So, we can’t nail down the costs exactly,” he said.

When Sue Feher, owner of The Break Room in Mount Pleasant, found out about the expensive surgery, she told Seth's girlfriend, Jessica Miller, that she wanted to host some sort of benefit. Seth has known Sue for years and is humbled by her generosity. She has put together a benefit pig roast at The Break Room in Brickyard neighborhood on Saturday, Jan. 29 from 1-5 p.m. “Because his bills are mounting, we are asking everyone to pull together and pitch in,’ said Feher. Sue, who also owns three other bars, said that she has put boots up on the bars in the restaurants to help raise funds.

“My employees are busy gathering prizes to be auctioned off,” said Feher. Some of the items that will be included in the silent auction are a bicycle, rounds of golf, gift certificates to local restaurants and Kiawah, among other things.

The Pig Roast is $5.00 a plate and retired North Charleston Assistant Fire Chief Kenny Bray will be cooking the pig. Music will be played by the Mike Thompson Band, who is donating their time to the benefit. Other local organizations have donated items as well. All of the proceeds will help Bacon with his medical expenses.

The Break Room is located at 2700 Highway 17 North. Bacon will also be guest- bartending this Saturday starting at 6:00 p.m.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Visit to the Sofa Super Store Site

Last week we had the opportunity to accompany our recruits on a visit to the Sofa Super Store site. This visit is a part of every recruit class and it gives the new hires an opportunity to learn about our fallen brothers. As we walked around the site, we stopped at the places where our heroes fell and we shared information about each of the 9, his place in the department, and personal information about them.   Afterwards, Chief Mark Davis shared his experience as a Captain on that fateful day. While all of us in attendance felt sadness, we believe it is important for all of our troops to know that the 9 were dedicated firefighters and family men, and also regular guys just like them. A visit to the site brings forth the stark reality that this is a dangerous job and that a firefighter’s life can hang in the balance on any call.  It also gives us an opportunity to honor Billy, Mike, Louis, Earl, Mark, Brad, Frenchie, Brandon and Melvin by restating our commitment as a department to never let this tragedy happen again.  Much has been done in the last three years to equip, train, and prepare the CFD to meet that commitment. There is much more to be done to continue to make the CFD a safer place and each of us, regardless of rank, position, time or affiliation with the department has a stake in that future.  

Sunday, January 9, 2011

CFST Program Evaluated By NFFF Team

Our Team and program were evaluated this past week by a group from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. NFFF representatives from Kansas City, New York, Virginia and Maryland were in town to interview our Team members to gain insight into how our program was started in 2007 and how it has evolved since then.  The evaluation included interviews and discussions with our Department of Mental Health management folks as well as our team leader, peer supervisor, clinicians/therapists and several of our CFD peer counselors.  It is hoped that information from this visit will be useful in the continuing development of a national model for the Fire Service and will also serve to improve our services to our firefighters and their families. 

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Peer Counselor Training Program Set for February!

On February 16th & 17th, 2010, the Charleston Firefighter Support Team will be presenting a  Peer Counselor Training Program. This program is an important component to the continuing development of our Peer Counseling Team in the department. It will be presented by members of the Firefighter Support Team along with others from the mental health community. We have made great strides in providing counseling services and emotional support to our firefighters since this program was started over three years ago. We know that line-of-duty deaths and serious injuries can trigger emotional problems for us all, and we also know that our firefighters face issues on a daily basis that can affect their lives and job performance. The program will include information on stress, anxiety, depression, anger management, marital and relationship problems, alcohol and substance abuse, suicide, listening skills, coping, children’s issues and many more subjects.  We are excited to be able to extend an invitation to other area fire department personnel to join us for this training.

This program will continue to strengthen our existing Team as we move into the future. While this training is necessary to prepare those who want to be peer counselors, it is being presented as a “no obligation” program to give all participants an opportunity to attend the training before deciding if becoming a peer counselor is appropriate for them. Regardless, this training will be useful to participants in their professional development.

This is a two day program and participants will be required to attend both days. Please contact Gerald Mishoe, as soon as possible, in the Support Team offices at (843) 609-8300 and let us know if you would like to attend. It is important that we finalize our list of interested personnel by January 31st so that we make preparations to include you in the class.
ADDED Friday, January 7th:  We are receiving a great deal of interest in this program.  You can also send me an e-mail to if you are interested in attending or sending personnel to the class.
Thanks, Gerald

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Loss of a True Fire Service Icon

WEST COLUMBIA - Richard Toal Mincey, 78, passed away at Dorn VA Medical Center on Thursday evening, December 30, 2010. He fought a long and courageous battle with Alzheimer's and Parkinson's diseases but lived a quality life at home through the love and care of his devoted wife of 55 years, Patricia Ann Ferguson Mincey, whom he affectionately called,'TrishAnn.'

Richard was born May 6, 1932, in Winnsboro, SC, to the late Julian Wade and Nellie Burckhalter Mincey. He dropped out of school in the seventh grade and a few years later joined the National Guard in May 1948. He transferred to the US Air Force and saw duty in Japan, Guam, the Philippines, and Korea as part of the Fire Crash and Rescue Squad. He was stationed at numerous bases stateside including Alaska and retired in 1968 after 20 years of military service.

While in the service, he earned his GED and a year of college credit. Using the GI bill, he pursued a college education, graduating from USC-Union with an Associate in Arts degree, and from Limestone College in Gaffney, SC, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Education.

Richard was employed as an instructor for the SC Fire Academy during the 1970's and often traveled the State teaching firefighting technology to both career and volunteer fire departments. His passion for improved fire and life safety standards captured the attention of the SC State Firefighters' Association in 1980 when that organization hired him as their first full-time lobbyist. He was instrumental in getting the doors of the State House to swing outward to meet fire codes. He retired from this position in 1994.

Governor Carroll Campbell awarded Richard the Order of the Palmetto, and the SC General Assembly passed a resolution in his honor. Richard was inducted into the SC Firefighters' Hall of Fame, and the board room at the South Carolina State Firefighters' Association building is named the "Richard T. Mincey Board Room".

Richard was truly a leader in every sense in his life. He inspired many of us in our careers and our lives and was truly an icon in the Fire Service. His influence will continue to be felt for years to come.  

I once heard a pastor end a funeral service with these words and I believe they are appropriate today. "Rest in Peace, Brother, you have done well".