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Official Publication of United Firefighters of Los Angeles City — Local 112, IAFF, AFL-CIO-CLC VOL. 49, No. 6

We woke up early (4:45 am) on Sept 11th to attend the FDNY Memorial Service on Riverside Dr. We showed up a little early. With time to spare, we went to breakfast with a fireman from the North Pole Fire Dept. While we were waiting for the ceremony to start, Andre and I were given the honor of participating in the presentation of the Ground Zero Flag (www.thegroundzeroflag. org). This was truly humbling. Hundreds of firemen from all over the world and we get the honor of holding this glorious flag that looked over the beautiful people that worked day and night to restore order to our battle scarred country. The ceremony started with The Star Spangled Banner. We dropped to one knee with our half of the flag, while the other half stood erect. All the firemen were brought to attention. “Company,” a short pause, “ATTENTION.” Everyone snapped to attention with heels together, hands along the pants seam, and a peering stare that demands respect. This is that moment when firemen present their A-game. A moment when there is a job to do. Everything stops, and for a moment we are warriors paying respect to our dead. A loud voice yells, “PRESENT ARMS!” as everyone’s right hand snaps to the bill of their cover. The song begins, it sounded like it was being sung by angels. “PARADE REST,” a voice demands. All the firemens’ hands snap behind their backs and they are allowed to move their feet to a more comfortable position. They are

November / December 2011

son? There is a short pause in the reading, “thank God, it’s over,” I say to myself. Then another lists starts to be read, “Captain James M. Amato, Squad 1, Fireman Calixto Anaya, Jr. Engine 4, Fireman Joseph J. Angelini, Sr., Rescue 1, Fireman Joseph J Angelini, Jr., Ladder 4. “My God, a dad and son both killed,” I think. The names stop. The time is 10:29, the time of the second tower collapse, another moment of silence. The names continue, Fireman Faustino Apostol Jr., Battalion 2, Fireman David G. Arce, Engine 33. We have an LAFD Engine 33, I know a bunch of guys that work there. The list continues, Fireman Louis Arena, Ladder 5, heck, I work at LAFD Ladder 5. The longer the list is read the more I realize that once again I am listening to my own mortality being read out loud in front of me. Fireman Carl F. Asaro Battalion 9. I look around and I am somehow comforted that if we do have to give all, it’s not in vane. (Continued on Page 9) By Jason Teter, LAFD

allowed a moment to stand comfortable, but not to rest. An opening prayer is given by the FDNY Chaplain. And then the reading of the names begins. Firefighter Joseph Agnello, Ladder 118, Lieutenant Brian G. Ahearn, En-

Photo By Shawn Kaye, EPN gine 230, Firefighter Eric T Allen Squad 18. The names continue like the credits in a movie. There is a pause, the time is 09:59, a moment of silence, this is the time the first tower fell. Then the names continue and just keep go-

ing, you picture them, you compare them to people you know. You listen to their ranks and where they worked. Were they on a truck, an engine, a rescue? Was the next names in line going to be brothers or a father and

Editor’s Note: The above article was written by LAFD Firefighter and blogger Jason Teter. Jason captured the emotions that thousands of firefighters were feeling while at the FDNY Memorial for the 9/11 Tribute. Jason Teter is a gifted writer and a dedicated Firefighter who is also featured on page 7 for his Tribute to Brotherhood. Jason rode his bicycle solo from L.A. to NY and blogged about his journey.

November/December 2011


The Los Angeles Firefighter

PERODICAL Postage Paid at Los Angeles, CA

Nearly 200 LAFD Firefighters Pay Respects in NY

Photo By Cheryl Goddard

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Los Angeles Firefighter

By Adam Knabe, Secretary During a recent visit to a Fire Station I was asked, “What can UFLAC do to motivate me to come down to a meeting?” I realized if this member was thinking this, there are probably others thinking this too. Before getting involved, similar thoughts ran through my mind. Then I thought of my father, who has never kept an opinion of his silent, and realized, if I have strong feelings of how I think things should be, and I have a passion for this Department and its tradition, I need to get involved. That is why I began training to qualify for specialized teams, got involved in the LA Firemen’s Credit Union, and ultimately ran for secretary of the Union. In the not so distant future, the generation of individuals who have carried the torch will retire and hopefully those of us with 1-15 years on have established ourselves well enough to continue the journey into the next decade. All that being said, your motivation for getting involved and having a voice should be to ensure that this Department is how you want it to be in the future. Like I have written before,

Your UFLAC Negotiating Team has worked tirelessly to get the best possible contract. Given the current economy this has been one of the toughest negotiations in history. The MOU that was ratified would not have been possible without compromise on both sides. Being on the Negotiating Team is often a thankless job so be sure and thank the members who are working so hard for you and your family. This years ratification voting took place over three days and three separate locations. Having the separate locations for voting received lots of positive feedback from the membership. There was also Negotiating Team and UFLAC Board members at the locations to answer any questions members might have before they vote.

let’s take all those ideas from the kitchen table and put them into action. At the same time, I understand how difficult it is to go from Chatsworth to 1571 Beverly Blvd. at 8 am on a Wednesday morning when you are driving the opposite direction to get home after work. I hope you have noticed that your Executive Board is trying to take steps to get more of you involved and to have your voices heard by taking the General Membership meeting on the road. The September meeting was at Fire Station 87 in Granada Hills and, in my opinion, was a huge success. There may have been just a few more individuals, but there were new faces. As a Board, I feel we tend to hear from the same members month after month, and although their input is extremely important, we need to hear from the 3,000 other opinions out there as well. Hopefully we will start hearing some of those on the road. Also, I hope that the new faces we saw in the Valley, will follow us downtown when we return to UFLAC.… and bring their friends. We are planning to hold the next meeting somewhere in the southern part of the City so keep an eye open for the next flyer. EMS Corner First thing, first, before we get to discussing EMS this month, I need to put out an apology and an explanation for the way I started my EMS discussion last month. I received numerous phone calls from concerned members regarding my attitude towards EMS. When I said, “Yes once again, I

This ratification vote was not only unique because of the multiple voting locations. This ratification was also unique because after members voted they received a Pink Local-112 t-shirt. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and UFLAC cares enough to wear pink. For details of the ratified MOU log into It is every members responsibility to read and familiarize yourself with the MOU. Thank you to all the members who voted at the Ratification Meetings. We are happy to see more members showing an interest in UFLAC and staying informed. Be sure and follow UFLAC on Facebook and Twitter for up to date information.`

RA-33 Cares Enough to Wear Pink

am sorry for discussing EMS in this paper…….,” it was meant strictly sarcastically and as a little bit of a joke. I am a Firefighter/ Paramedic myself and am currently assigned to a rotational Task Force. When I transferred from being a Staff Assistant, before they were EIT’s, it was to go back to being a paramedic/firefighter. EMS is 85% of our daily duties and I feel blessed that I can do the most treatment possible for the citizens we serve. So again, if you were offended by my article I am sorry, it was not intended how it was perceived. By the time you read this, this will be old news, but I want to commend those members currently in paramedic school. On one of their recent block exams (mid September), out of the top 10 scores, 9 of them were LAFD members. Great job guys!!! Keep up the hard work. Being a “rep” for our members, especially for the EMS related cases, has shown me that even the most routine sick call at 2am can have a not so good outcome for those first responders. This discussion is not only for the paramedics, it’s for the EMT’s on the 800’s and the EMT’s on the engine companies signing out a patient. We talked last month about patients requiring 12 Leads, well this month I want to talk about walking patients. Hold on, I am not saying you can’t do it, I am just saying there is in fact a policy in place. Please review Departmental Bulletin 06-15 with your crews. Trust me I know, I have walked patients numerous times and most of the time it is the patient’s request, but if the pa-

November / December 2011

tient is walked from the incident location to the RA and then into the ER, document it in the EMS report why the patient walked and that they did not meet any of the criteria mandating a ride on the gurney. All it will take is for one person outside the Department to complain that they saw you walk a patient and you will be downtown for an interview. It doesn’t matter if anything happened to the patient or not by you walking them. Save yourself and your partner headache and heartache, wheel them out or document why not. You will be happier in the long run. Again, if you have had any experiences that our members can learn from to save them trouble in the future, write me and let us all learn from each other. I know I have already! Just Do What’s Right I hear more and more, “Oh, he is pro-management”, or “he is a union goon”. We have so much

LAPPL President Paul Weber with UFLAC Board

Director Escobar and Acting President Dapper at UFLAC Office

Director Gamboa at FS-64

dissension in our ranks and division amongst ourselves based on uniform and badge color. Why can’t we go back to just doing what’s right no matter who it sides with. I know what you are thinking, “well everyone thinks their way is right.” This is true but that is where communication comes in. I think our Board in the last month or so has truly seen how relationships and communication can go a long way and are crucial in trying to accomplish goals. Everyone is going to have an opinion as to what the right thing to do is, but when you are able to sit down and discuss your view with your detractor, there is always another side to the story and a reason for their action. Now as you communicate, you may very well show the other side that you have a reason for your view and come out ahead. We need to check our egos at the door, no matter what rank we are and just work together.

Director Nonini at FS-64

Election Committee Chair Elguea Hard at Work

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By Jeff Dapper. Acting President As most of you know, UFLAC President Pat McOsker announced he was taking a leave of absence beginning about 8 weeks ago to campaign for the open seat in Los Angeles City Council District 15. During his time away, as per our Constitution and By-Laws, I will be the acting President - and I wanted to take this opportunity to clarify what this means to the membership and provide you with updates on some items we are addressing. Questions about the Leave of Absence Several members have inquired about the length of my tenure during this leave of absence. For clarification, Pat McOsker will likely remain on his leave of absence for the following reasons: - If he is one of the top two candidates in the Primary Election on November 8, 2011 - he will likely remain on leave and continue on to the General Election. -If he wins the General Election run-off on January 17, 2012 - he would retire from the LAFD effective immediately. -The McOsker for Council campaign is going well and we continue to be optimistic. However, he could return to his position at UFLAC in November or January depending on the outcome of the elections. I hope this helps clear up any questions you may have. September General Membership Meeting In an effort to increase accessibility, participation and attendance - on September 21, 2011, our General Membership meeting was held at Fire Station 87 in Battalion 15. This was the first meeting in several years that was offered at a remote location. The meeting was well attended and the membership provided a robust exchange of information. We intend to periodically offer future meetings at remote locations. Status of Negotiations When I took over as President, we had been encountering some roadblocks in our negotiations. I have opened fresh dialogue with City Hall - and along with the

Los Angeles Firefighter

tireless efforts of our Negotiating Team we now have a MOU that has been Ratified by the membership. Overtime There has been significant discussion by the membership over the past couple of years about overtime inequities and the possibility of a letter of agreement for a cumulative hour/low number SOD hiring system. Additionally, the concept of a 48/96 work schedule has been discussed for several years - and continues to be raised. It has been my belief that progress has been slow on these items and, at my request; our Negotiating Team has discussed and considered both issues during several recent meetings. Because both issues would represent a significant change to our established procedures, the membership will be afforded the opportunity to vote on both issues before we attempt to secure a letter of agreement. Saving the Membership Money A central theme of my campaign was a pledge to reduce expenditures. To that end, your Executive Board is consistently trying to find ways to operate more efficiently. During the past year alone, we have reduced operating expenses by well over two hundred thousand dollars ($200,000). Since beginning my tenure as acting President, we now have two members of the board assigned full time to the Fire Chief’s office thereby saving the membership several thousand more dollars per month. Benefits The Dental Plan has been updated and will now include a network of providers for Direct Reimbursement claims. We are changing carriers to MetLife. This will allow us to increase dependent coverage to age 26 and add dental implants as an additional covered benefit. This change in insurance carriers will allow us to provide the aforementioned additional benefits as well as maintain long term stability of the Dental Plan. Retiree Health Subsidy Issue Executive Board members actively visited Fire Stations to

Seattle FD Local 27 President Kenny Stuart at FDNY Memorial

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explain the 2% “opt in” Retiree Health Subsidy contribution. Additionally, we had presentations by subject matter experts at consecutive UFLAC meetings, and we communicated with the Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension staff as they offered multiple seminars in an effort to ensure our members were fully informed prior to making their decision. The opt in period is now closed and UFLAC will continue to inform the membership of any new developments. Training We have been actively working and collaborating with our members assigned to the Department’s In-Service Training Section to streamline the Cal-JAC funding process which will produce additional training course offerings for our members. We are happy to announce that the In-Service Training Section recently announced the first ever non-officer offering of the Los Angeles Fire Department Leadership Academy - a course modeled after West Point Leadership, and the non-officer delivery begins in May of 2012. UFLAC took a direct role in the nomination and subsequent selection of an LAFD Captain as a representative on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) 2011 Assistance to Firefighters Grant peer review panel. This is a federal grant program where an appropriation of $810 million in support for Fire and EMS services has been approved for FY 2011. UFLAC also is sponsoring a one day Leadership Symposium by subject matter experts. Technology Updates You may have noticed that your UFLAC website has been completely redesigned and new content is being added daily. We are actively planning for online voting (where circumstances will allow) - as well as developing member polls and a paycheck calculator. Make sure and follow UFLAC on Facebook and Twitter for up to date and breaking news that relates to UFLAC. We also have a new Smart Phone application you can download from the UFLAC website. Additional Activities I have initiated discussions and dialogue with the Mayor, City Council members and their staffs regarding the restoration

FDNY Memorial Wall

Patriot Flag at Frank Hotchkins Memorial Training Center of LAFD staffing. I have also met personally with our new Fire Chief to discuss this and many other issues. We continue to provide disciplinary representation for dozens of our members. One of the areas of discussion I covered with our Fire Chief was modifications to the Complaint Tracking System (CTS) and portions of the investigatory and representation process. We hope to see this system evolve with changes to areas where our members are being unnecessarily adversely impacted. In the past month, UFLAC had the opportunity to provide financial assistance to the Memorials at FHMTC, as well as the LAFD museum. We also provided support for the Ride for 9/11, the Never Forget Ride as well as a

reception for UFLAC and FDNY members in New York. Happy Holidays As we move into the Holiday Season please remember the things that are important in life. Celebrate responsibly with the ones you love. Happy Holidays from my family to yours. I am humbled by the honor and opportunity to serve on your Executive Board and now as your acting President. If you have any questions or feedback, please feel free to send me an email at: Sincerely and Fraternally,

FDNY Fire Station 10 with Dennis Garza

FDNY Firefighter Memorial

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Los Angeles Firefighter

take a bite! We did great though in negotiations after the Council voted to furlough you; we have a NO FURLOUGH CLAUSE in our upcoming 3 year contract!

By Frank Lima 2nd Vice President Pension Issues The 45 day ‘opt-in’ window is over for contributing 2% additional percent into the pension to secure raises in your future retiree monthly medical health subsidy. Approximately 70% of our pension members (LAFD, LAP, and Port Police) opted in, as to not be ‘frozen’ forever in future retiree raises. This is continuing to be a very evolving situation, and after the pension meeting on October 6th it is clear and more than likely that litigation will ultimately decide the entire 2% issue, and whether the retiree medical subsidy raises are a vested benefit or not. As of this writing I will be attending meetings on behalf of UFLAC with the PPL and the CAO for the rules/requirements/standards, etc…. regarding the ‘dispute resolution committee’ for the 2% medical contribution. We will continue to update you on pension issues as they arise.

LAPPL Gala No Furlough Language! Earlier this year the City Council voted to furlough our LAFD sworn personnel working in a special duty (4/10) capacity including our Inspectors, and that would of cut 2.3% of their base take home pay. As I mentioned after this vote, we would NOT allow a small percentage of our bargaining unit to take a ‘hit’ while the rest of us sat back and watched; we were all prepared to

Arbitration Updates Arbitration is a benefit that we have and cherish, especially in the discipline arena. Arbitration is a check valve that we have with our management, and it is also something that the department has wanted to desperately take from us while at the negotiating table. Why try and take away a noneconomic item like arbitration during these challenging fiscal times? Good question. We have the right to arbitrate discipline and fight for you, a negotiated benefit that we will not relinquish. However, your union board cannot arbitrate every discipline case for various reasons. Financially we couldn’t support every case, some cases we do not want to arbitrate because it could have a negative impact on thousands of our members, and occasionally we have to pick our battles and keep our integrity as a union. The discipline arbitration has worked in the past, and continues to work. Following our Board of Rights process (that seldom seems to work and render justice, but occasionally it does work), we have arbitration. Remember the 120 day suspension without pay a few ago? It was a pleasure getting that suspension 100% overturned! Recently we have had a termination case overturned by an arbitrator with full back pay ordered, a decision about the department disciplining members for nolo contender plea in court for off duty actions. We also had a commercial driver license arbitration rule in our favor big time. The union’s position was that the departments was unilaterally changing the discipline system without using the meet and confer process (as required by law). Management drew up and distributed ‘Departmental Bulletin 10-05’ (dated May 19, 2010) in regards to commercial driver’s licenses and discipline. Some of the arbitrators awards were as follows: • Vacate and Rescind Departmental Bulletin 1005 • Cease and desist from changing the disciplinary penalties without meeting and conferring in good faith with the Union • Make whole, for any loss sustained, all members who have been precluded from working, placed on leave and/or ordered to a

Fire Chief Cummings and Urquiza Family at CPF Memorial

Board of Rights because of a failure to maintain a valid Driver’s License with proper endorsements These are just some of the examples and awards to report, but as the UFLAC discipline committee chair I wanted to make sure you were aware that your union will fight for you and has sustained some good victories in the discipline arena recently. Also coming up is a recently filed lawsuit in Superior Court by UFLAC for Firefighter Bill of Rights violations, Skelly violations, and due process blunders by the Internal Affairs Section that didn’t think twice about trampling our members’ rights (after we made several good faith attempts to fix the issues). Firefighter Memorials Fallen Firefighter memorials continue to be a very solemn and humbling reminder to never forget our brothers and sisters who have paid the ultimate sacrifice! If you have never been, please make an effort to attend one of the events next year in our hometown at the LAFD Memorial, in Sacramento at our State Memorial, or in Colorado Springs at the IAFF Memorial. Several of your board members were in attendance at the various memorials spending time with the fallen widows and children of our brothers. Words cannot say enough about the LAFD Color and Honor Guards! Our Color Guards are as good and professional as it gets, and the cadre of the crew is growing! Please thank them when you see them at the firehouse or after marching at an event and representing you; often times away from their families for days at a time doing their honorable work. Also in attendance in Sacramento was LAFD Fire Chief Cummings. This was the 9th annual California State Fallen Firefighter Memorial, and the first time we have ever seen an LAFD Fire Chief in attendance there, thanks for showing you care and remember! 9/11 Memorial – Never Forget As a U.S.A.R. rescue worker at ground zero beginning work on 9/12/11, it changed my life forever as it did the fire service, and our country. There is not a Memorial that will ever replace the horror, terror, and loss of life of our FDNY fallen 343, Police, and civilians going to work that day. Words cannot take back the fatherless children growing up because of the attacks, and the firefighters who survived that are still suffering adverse health effects as well. As a department we need to never forget that

Fire Hog Check Presentation

November / December 2011

Boxing with Carmen A. Trutanich, City Attorney day, and think about it daily as a reminder of what we do day in/day out and the dangers we face in this different world with terrorism. The 10 year memorial service at LAFD’s training facility was well attended. We had a cadre of members who rode their tenspeeds across the country, the Firehogs rode their motorcycles across the country as well. They met up in New York City for the memorial in NYC as well. It was nice that the LAFD represented the memory of 9/11 from coast to coast.

Pilot Glen Smith I’d like to express our most sincere condolences to the family of our active Helicopter Pilot Glen Smith. Brother Smith recently lost a long battle with cancer, but left behind a legacy on our Department. Glen’s son Steven is an active Firefighter at Fire Station 94, and Steven is continuing to hear stories about what a great man his father was. Also in addition to Glen being a true gentleman, he was a very competent Firefighter and Pilot, and the first African American Helicopter Pilot in the history of the LAFD. Glen would routinely hit the mark with his pinpoint water drops when the pressure was on him with Firefighters below him in harm’s way of an fast moving brush fire, or hovered the helicopter perfectly while hoisting a fallen hiker during an over the cliff side rescue, or steadily following a stranded child while making an heroic rescue with cables and ropes in

the pouring rain right above a fast moving flood control river. At the Smith residence days after his passing, I heard several stories that were shared with family, friends, and co-workers; we have to do our part to keep those stories going to keep Glen’s memory and legacy going. Brother Glen, we would like to thank you for your years of service, memories, teaching the other Pilots, and leaving your legacy behind. We will never forget you! (Look for a Complete Tribute to Glen Smith Next Issue) Wellness – Health Please take advantage of the wellness-fitness initiative that we have worked out with management. What it comes down to is a choice to exercise/ workout while on-duty, or not to. This is an outstanding benefit that we have, so please take advantage of it. Blood Pressure checks…….. have you done them yet? If so, are you doing them on a regular basis? I will continue to pound this into you to check and monitor your own blood pressure, keep your own log (confidential), and address the silent killer head because it is easily treatable if detected early! We’ve heard back from several members on the Stop, Drop, and Control High Blood Pressure that have detected a problem, and now have it under control. Firefighters always help others, and rarely help themselves. Check your blood pressure for your family because High BP does not discriminate with age, race, or religion. Brothers and Sisters please take care of yourself. Happy Holidays! The Holidays are upon us now during these fall months so regardless of your religious faith affiliation, take the time and spend it with those you love. Take the time to appreciate all of the good things we have. Take the time to do something nice in your actions for another brother or sister in the department. Keep the families of our fallen in your prayers and thoughts during this time of the year.

LAFD Honor Guards

November / December 2011

By Chuong Ho Director IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial: The 2011 Observance of the IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial took place on September 17, 2011 in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The annual IAFF Observance honors those brave souls who selfishly and bravely gave their lives serving and protecting their communities. This year,

Los Angeles Firefighter

two Los Angeles City brothers were honored when their names were etched on the granite walls at Memorial Park in Colorado Springs. The names of Brothers Glenn Allen and Gary Clark are now enshrined forever on this sacred wall next to the other brave men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice. May God bless you and your families! This year’s observance was well attended by Local 112 members to not only honor our fallen brothers, but also to support the families of these heroes. Those in attendance included members of your UFLAC executive board, members of your Relief Association board, the LAFD Color Guard, and the LAFD Fire Hogs. As a first time attendee to this event, I was extremely humbled to be a part of the fire department contingent that made the trip to Colorado Springs. The strength and kindness of both the Allen

and Clark families were truly inspirational and we thank them for allowing the fire service the opportunity to honor our fallen brothers! They will never be forgotten. California Professional Firefighters (CPF) Memorial Ceremony: The California Professional Firefighters held their annual Fallen Firefighters Memorial on October 1, 2011. The California Memorial Wall is located on the historic grounds of the State Capitol in Sacramento. Of the 30 heroes enshrined at this year’s service, five had ties to Los Angeles City. Glenn Allen (2/19/2011), Gary Clark (9/22/2010), John Callahan (8/18/2010), Ralph Urquiza (9/20/2009), and Keith Kroll (12/9/1979) all joined the list of California’s fallen heroes who have made the ultimate sacrifice. We thank the CPF for putting to-

IAFF Memorial in Colorado Springs with Clark and Allen Families

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gether such a wonderful and fitting tribute for the families of our fallen brothers. California Fire Foundation: The California Fire Foundation is the CPF charitable organization that helps the children of California’s fallen firefighters pay for school. Each year, scholarships are awarded to help eligible children in their pursuit for higher education. To qualify, applicants must be the child of a California fallen firefighter whose name is on the Memorial Wall. Currently, the scholarships that are awarded each July are in the amount of $2,000.00. With college education costs skyrocketing, your CPF would like to increase the scholarship amounts to keep up with the times. We must never forget and therefore, continue to be there for the children of our fallen heroes. As such, the Foundation has created an endowment where

donated monies can be held, invested, and utilized to make sure that this scholarship program will be sufficient and satisfy the increasing costs of higher education. The Fire Foundation needs our help in raising money. The CPF’s California Fire Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization so your donations are tax deductible and ultimately, your donation(s) will be the key ingredient in ensuring the success of this wonderful endeavor. To make a donation, contact the Fire Foundation at (800) 890-3213 and/or www.cafirefoundation. org. After you make your generous donation, ask about the CPF challenge coin. I urge you to donate today! In parting, I leave you with a quote from one of my childhood heroes: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, what are you doing for others?” - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Allen Family with Fire Chief Brian Cummings in Sacramento

LAFD Honor Guards Go Above and Beyond engraved on the limestone wall were Ralph D. Urquiza, Glenn D. Allen, Gary Clark, ret. LAFD John Callahan and David Lawrence Powell father of active duty A/O Dustin Powell. David was an A/C, California Emergency Management Agency. The Honor Guard was also present in Sacramento and did a fine job representing the LAFD.

By Tony Gamboa Director Honor Guard Colorado Springs There were two Los Angeles Firefighter names engraved on the granite wall in Colorado Springs, Glenn Allen and Gary Clark. Both families had support from your Executive Board on behalf of every Local 112 member as well as support from the Relief Association during their stay in Colorado. Our Honor Guard did an outstanding job representing the LAFD during that memorial weekend. Shannon Saffo, Kevin Johnson, Ryan O’Gorman, Alfonso Mackey and Kelly Niles were the members that were present out of 21 member cadre. The guys were professional, looked sharp and made us all proud! Sacramento This year I had the humbled privilege to escort Janice LeDoux widow of Keith Kroll and Keith’s granddaughter Christine Sprague at this year’s memorial in Sacramento. The other names that were

Retiree Health 2% Contribution Over the past few months we

had many informational sessions at Firehouses to get as much information out to our members prior to September 29, 2011 opt in date. The calls were non stop since July to our board members. We had 2 informational sessions at the UFLAC office and the LAFPP had several informational sessions as well. Hopefully the sessions at the firehouses along with e-mails and info behind the secure login on our website have helped some make a more informed decision.


Family of Keith Kroll at CPF Memorial in Sacramento

Representation Brothers and sisters, if you receive notification from PSD that you are under investigation and wish to have representation please call the James A. Perry Labor Center (UFLAC Office) immediately for assistance. 32nd Annual Labor Day Parade and BBQ This past Labor Day event that took place in Wilmington was a success. Several of your Execu-

tive Board members, Stewards and Family members came out to support the labor coalition. Our Local 112 MOAB was at the center stage with friends of labor in local, state and federal level of government helping out at the BBQ and serving thousands that showed up. The teachers, grocery workers, Teamsters, Longshoremen, and so many others appreciated the Firefighters in joining them in solidarity for that special day.

LA City Controller Wendy Greuel Working the MOAB

32nd Annual Labor Day Volunteers

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On July 28 , a group of 20 Firehogs participated in the send off ceremonies for the cyclist riding coast to coast as the Ride for 911 Riders. At the conclusion of that ceremony the Firehogs escorted the cyclist to the City of Los Angels limits. On August 25, A ceremony, coordinated by Firehog Vice President Mike Kammerer, was held at the World Trade Center Memorial at Frank Hotchkin Training Center to recognize all the LAFD members making the journey to NYC for the 9/11 Memorials. This event included speeches by Fire Chief Brian Cummings, UFLAC representative Frank Lima, and a benediction by Chaplin Mark Wolfe. Firehog Vice President Mike Kammerer then spoke about the importance of the Coast to Coast Ride and to always remember the sacrifices made that day ten years ago and are still being made by those in our military to this day. Firehog Vice President Mike Kammerer, acknowledged the donations given by UFLAC ($2500) the Fireman’s Credit Union ($1000), and the Fireman’s Relief Association ($1000), for banquet to be held in NYC for those that traveled there and for the FDNY Fireriders. Fire Hog North End Vice President Jack Wise presided over the ceremonies and gave the tribute of the 10 bells honoring Gary Stameisen, Gary Clark, Glenn Allen, and those that gave their lives in

Los Angeles Firefighter

the Fire Service in NY and Los Angeles. Following the ceremony, a catered lunch sponsored by UFLAC, the Los Angeles Firemans Credit Union, and the Los Angeles Firemans Relief Association was provided on the drill deck of FHMTC. From August through September over thirty five members of the Los Angeles City Fire Department departed on a cross country trip across the United States to New York to pay tribute to their Fallen Brothers of the FDNY. The Knoxville boys had arranged a personalized tour of the Jack Daniels Distillery- on our way to Knoxville that included a tour of the Old No 7 Fire Brigade, led by Master Distiller, Jeff Arnett . The riders were escorted into Knoxville by the State Troopers with fanfare courtesy of the Knoxsville Boys. At the hotel in Knoxville other Clans for Los Angeles joined the group and the riders numbered over 30. The Knoxville Boys proved that they had been busy planning events to make our stay memorial with an escorted tour on September 4, through the infamous Dragon Tail Canyon Road, that boasted 318 turns in 11 miles. Later that evening, we attended a local concert that included the Kentucky Headhunters that honored the Firehogs as guest of honor.

With one of the Clans going to the NASCAR Race the other Clans departed on September 5, for a 300 mile trip Roanoke, VA. Departing Roanoke, VA on September 6@ 0800hrs we were able to pay our respects at the pentagon memorial in the early after noon and later that evening the group chartered a buss for an evening tour of Washington DC that included a visit to pay our respects at the Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Wall, Korean Memorial, Martin Luther King Memorial, and World War II Memorial. Leaving Washington D.C. on September 7 for a 420 miles ride to Philadelphia, the Clans traveled to the small town of Shanksville to pay honor to those who sacrificed their lives in the struggle of flight 93. From there we traveled through the battlefields of Gettysberg on our way to Philadelphia. Upon entering Philadelphia we stopped at the Central Market and met up with the Ride for 911 Riders who still had a few hundred miles to go. With all the Clans back together again we departed Philadelphia, PA on September 8 for our destination of New York City, NY. With over 30 riders now in the group, on September 9 we rode to New Jersey to escort the Ride for 911 Riders into NYC and the FDNY Firemen’s Memorial at Riverside Park, NY. Joining

November / December 2011

the escort were members of the NYPD & FDNY. At the Firemen’s Memorial, a ceremony was held marking the end of Cyclist Coast to Coast Ride. Firehog Vice President Mike Kammerer, presented a check of $5,000 to the FDNY Widows & Orphans Fund. That evening a ceremony was held honoring those that made the pilgrimage to NYC to honor the fallen. This event was held at our host hotel, the Brooklyn Marriott, which was sponsored by UFLAC, the Los Angeles Fireman’s Relief Association and the Los Angeles Firemen’s Credit Union for the FDNY & LAFD present in NYC. Highlights of the event included the tribute to Gary Stameisen which included his widow Lori, the 10 bell ceremony honoring those that have received their last call, and the presence of the FDNY. On the morning of September 11, Charter Buses left the hotel to Riverside Park for the official FDNY Memorial Ceremony. This event included the reading of the names of the 343 members lost. Following that the busses took everyone to the ceremony at the FDNY Firemen’s Museum for the dedication of Chaplain Mike Judge’s turn outs and gear to the museum. Other events attended included the 10 House Still Standing, Ceremony at Ground Zero with the FDNY Pipes and Drum Ceremony. As a final tribute to one of our own, on September 12, we rode to Coney Island Firemen’s Memo-

rial Wall for the burning of Gary Stameisen’s Fighog Colors with the FDNY Fire Riders and other IAFF members. Gary’s ashes were then tossed into the Sea he loved so much for all eternity. On September 13 most clans left from NYC taking various routes to the IAFF Colorado Springs Memorial. Many of the Clans attended the September 17, Wind & Fire Rocky Mountain Chapter-Ride to Remember, 2011, which endsed at the IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial Service where the names of Battalion Chief Gary Clark & FF Glenn Allen were added to the Memorial Wall. After the weekend services most of the remaining Clans took their own routes home, During the 24-day ride, the Firehogs raised over $5000 dollars for the FDNY, traveled close to 8,000 miles with over 30 riders, rode through arduous conditions each day, and only had 3 minor falls with no injuries. The coordination of the last 10 years by Mike Kammerer, Scott Gill, the Knoxville Boys, and all the Clans resulted in an event that will be etched in the minds of those that participated forever. To quote a blessing that was our matra : May you always ride with the wind in your face, the sun at your back, the rubber side down, and may you never ride faster then your Guardian Angels can fly….. By Jack Wise, LAFD

November / December 2011

By Jason Teter, LAFD Firefighter Recently, I completed a journey that would change my life forever. It was a journey into the heart of our brotherhood. Many times it takes a tragedy to bring light to the loving family that we belong to. My life was going to become embraced by our Fire Department family and it was just a bike ride away. It’s not easy to make the decision to leave your home, your family, and your friends for 47 days. It’s even harder when you are leaving them to ride your bike over 3500 miles across the country. The reason I embarked on this journey was to pay tribute to the fire service and the 343 men that gave the ultimate service while protecting others. After six months of training, I rolled out of Fire Station 89 on July 24, 2011, accompanied on a bicycle by my friend, A/O Rob Curtis, from FS 89 and followed by my wife Nicole, her sister, Haylee, her mom, Gemma, my friend, LAPD Detective Robert De Armon, my friend, A/O Matt Nolen, and his wife, Kristy. This is were my journey as a firefighter started so it was fitting that my tribute to the fire service should also start here. My plan was to ride without a support vehicle. I would carry everything I needed for the next 47 days on my bicycle. I started off pulling everything I needed including the kitchen sink in a trailer. After two weeks, I narrowed everything down to 2 small bags on the back of my bike. Occasionally, firemen would ride along and they would provide a day of SAG support. Most days, I was on my own and it was very long between stops. On Sundays, most business were closed, so these days proved to be somewhat trying. On one occasion, I had to ride 2 days out of my way to fix a wheel. For the most part the self-reliance just added to the adventure. As I embarked on this epic adventure, I had no idea what to

Photo by Haylee Solomon

Los Angeles Firefighter

expect. All I knew was that 9/11 had a profound affect on me as a Firefighter and as an American. I felt compelled to pay tribute to the men that changed my life that day. When I left in July, our Fire Department was in one of the lowest points I have ever seen. Morale was already nonexistent and then we shut down 18 fire companies due to budget cuts. I was almost relieved to be taking a break from all the negativity that had been surrounding us for so long. I’ll be the first to admit, I was feeling very discouraged with our Department when I left. On the third day of riding, I was met by several other riders, Fire-

She starts talking about how he excelled in the training tower and he graduated in the top of class as a paramedic. This girl is too young to have known him when he was in the training tower, she is starting to walk a really thin line now. Who is this women? Now she starts telling a story. When your Captain had only two days on the job he responded to a call of a child drowning. As he arrived on scene he observed a two-year old floating lifeless in the pool. He jumped in and pulled the child to safely. He began to work on her lifeless body as he rushed her into the ambulance. That’s a really stressful day for a kid with only two days on the Fire

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dad answered for us, “Firemen don’t quit, son.” From here on out the days would consist of approximately 90 miles a day, the longest day being 130 miles. Most breakfasts

‘The Fire Department spirit is very much still alive across the country.’ Jason Teter fighters from Jean, Nevada. Not only did they ride with us, their department provided apparatus to escort us into Las Vegas. As we were riding we discussed many of issues that plagued both our departments, budgets, pensions, etc. My new friend asked me, “Why are you doing this?” Normally, I would have explained it the same way that I explained it above, but I didn’t. Instead I answered, “I am searching for something.” Almost surprised by my own answer, I began to contemplate why I had answered that way. Then he asked, “What are you searching for?” I answered, “Something I have lost over the last 11 years, that feeling I had when I was new on the job.” He did not say anything else about it. We continued to talk about the fire service until we reached the edge of his district. “I want to tell you a story before I go,” he said, “I recently attended a retirement dinner for one of our department Captains. It was a pretty standard dinner everyone was telling stories about his career. All his brothers were laughing and scratching like we do. Our last chance to razz our friend before he goes. Then out of nowhere this lady that no one seems to know takes the podium. She is old enough to be his daughter, but we all know his family and we don’t know her. Firemen are protective of their brothers and no one knows this women. Suddenly the whole room is watching this lady like a hawk. She starts talking about what a great guy the Captain is and what a great paramedic he is, now we are really suspicious.

Department. Two days in the field and he had already proven that he was meant to do this job, he had found his calling. She looked at the fire Captain and said, ‘thank you for saving my life that day.’ This women was the girl in the pool. There was not a dry eye in the house that night.” My eyes welled up when he told the story. I felt like I had been kicked in the gut by a mule. Suddenly I got it. It was not about what we were talking about that mattered, it was that we were talking, that mattered. One brother talking to another. It’s not about where you are standing, it’s who you are standing with that is important. Suddenly my mission was clear. This was not just about paying tribute to those we have lost, I was going to draw a line from one end of the country to the other. I was going to leave a can in California and string a line across the country and bring a can to New York. For you younger readers I would be building cell towers across the country. I would attempt to connect our brothers like we were connected just after 9/11. My mission had already began without me, I just had to catch up. The next morning we had 6 firefighters show up at 0430 hours to ride with us 100 miles in 100 degree weather. A fireman’s son drove a pick up truck filled with cold water and snacks, flying an American flag. At one point when the sun, or fireball as they refer to it in Nevada, came out, the riding really became tough. The kid asked all the riders, “Does anyone want to ride in the truck?” His

Scott Smith, John Marsco, Jason Teter in NYC

and lunches would consist of coffee, Skittles, and York peppermint patties. All of which would come from an establishment that also sold liquor or fuel. Occasionally, I would stumble across a diner, there I would enjoy a sitdown meal consisting of eggs and bacon. Dinner, or supper as they still call it in farm country, was a different story. I would generally enjoy a fine meal with my bothers in the fire house. Sleeping accommodations varied from station to station. I slept on beds, couches, futons, air mattresses, TV chairs, and floors. I traveled with a pillow, and bedding was readily available. All I really ever needed was a hospital sheet. Once you get out of the major cities most of the fire departments are volunteer. Most volunteer departments don’t have beds because they don’t man the station until a call comes in. Some volunteer stations would put me up in their homes and feed me dinner and breakfast. Others would open their station and I would stay there alone. From time to time, a hotel stay was the only viable option. At some point, I realized that I was not alone so far away from home. I was being cared for by my brothers. I was in their hands now. They would take me in, make sure I was housed, cleaned and fed, then they would gently hand me off to the next family member. At one point, my brother Firefighter Ceaser Garcia, FS 66, shipped me a new replacement wheel set. The Nolen family provided tires for the wheels. Now I was literally riding on the generosity of my brothers.

In Salt Lake City, the Fire Captain woke up early and had breakfast ready by 0500. One of the off going Engineers put on his uniform drove his personal car to the training tower, picked up a rig, and escorted me through a dangerous portion of the Rocky Mountains. No one every asked for these things, these men just made it happen. You can try to force a fireman to do what you demand and your results will be less then gratifying. If you ask for their help and let them do their job, they will move mountains for you. The stories go on and on. The stories of our family working together to accomplish one common goal, the goal being never forget. The final leg of my journey would be the FDNY memorial in New York. I was joined by my friend, Firefighter Andre Voelker and my family, Nicole, Haylee and Whitney. We joined thousands of firefighters from all over the world to pay our respects at the memorial. During my journey, it was made very clear to me that the Fire Department spirit is very much still alive across the country. Our department has reached a dangerous level of separation. With MCP, Pool positions, and Fire company closures, quite often members find themselves on their own, segment after segment. The fire service is what it is today because of the brotherhood. It is in my opinion after spending time in over 40 fire stations across the nation that we must preserve our way of life. We are on the verge of a new era in emergency services. To remain the front runners, we must be united. From the Fire Chief on down we must look to the future and focus on what made us what we are today. Our commitment to providing service to the citizens of the city.


Photo by Haylee Solomon

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By John Marasco,

Fire Station 66 July 24, 2011... Almost 10 years since the day that our generation lived through a day we would never forget. A group of Firefighters, from LA City Fire, LA County Fire and Fullerton Fire embarked on a journey across America.  Most had met a few times before the ride had started, some were experienced cyclists, and others were ammeters, but all had a common goal of riding for honor and never forgetting the 343 firemen and the military men and women that have given their lives since 9/11.  One day I received a call from a good friend of mine Scott Smith who was an LA County firefighter asking me for help.  He was cycling across America for the 10year anniversary of 9/11.   Himself being a former Marine and a 10-year veteran of LA County fire, assigned to LA County 16s, he expressed a strong desire to pedal every mile across our great nation to remember that day.  He had teamed up with Marv Williams FS 4, Warren Sutton of OCD, Jorge Ostrovsky of FS 69, Scott Hambly and Jim Prabhu of FS 37, Randall Wright LA County 54 to cycle the whole way across the US.  Adam Loeser and Mike Meacham of Fullerton Fire station 1 and myself planned cycle about half the country.  Rob Scott of FS 27, Mike Ketaily and Doke Smith of FS 69 planned drive the RV and help with support and logistics. The Ride For 9-11 would be raising money for The Leary Firefighter Foundation, which raises money for firefighting equipment, as well as, The Wounded Warrior Project, which helps military men and women

Los Angeles Firefighter

November / December 2011

in countless ways. Immediately, I wanted in and I remembered back to September 11th 2001 like a vivid dream.  I was attached to the Marine Expeditionary Unit on a port visit in Australia.  We had heard the Twin Towers were hit, no one knew how bad.  The Skipper recalled Liberty and we sent sail immediately.  The next 7 months of my life would be flying around the clock helicopter missions in the invasion of a country I knew nothing about.  I grew up in New Jersey seeing the towers as a regular part of the skyline of Manhattan, while now all I have to remember them is by videos of how they fell.  To this day, I have always felt that I wish I could have done more.   Loeser flew out after 9/11 to help at ground zero, known as the pile, right after the attack.  Meacham flew out

daunting task, let alone crossing it during the summer. As the departure date neared, fund raising events, work and life seemed to always get into the way of training for the ride.  There was a lot to do and little time to do it.   The first day on the ride was over a 130 miles long into the desert.  We left FS 27 with a hero’s departure, as the Fire chiefs’ of LA city and LA County, LA city councilman Tom LaBonge and a crowd of friends and family watched us depart.  We quickly learned that maps, GPS, and bicycle computer programs aren’t always perfect. The first week we faced brutally hot temperatures as we crossed the California desert.  Temperatures above 115 marred the ride.  Too hot and dry to even sweat or breathe and the knowl-

hands, just happy to get a wave or look from one of the riders. There I met a father of an Army sniper that was killed in action in Iraq.  I was brought nearly to tears as he thanked me for what we were doing and how he remembers his son by giving back.   Then we road into Pittsburgh, where we were led in by a group motorcycle cops.  We picked up another Fullerton Firefighter Mike Meacham.  The guys knew we were getting close to reaching our goal.  Before we knew it, we were in Shanksville, PA visiting the Flight 93 memorial.  Then to DC at the Pentagon memorial talking to a firefighter that fought the fire at the Pentagon. We road off to New Jersey through Philly, I had reached my old stopping ground.  In Philly we picked up a retired Fireman

to NYC and attended firefighter funerals in his dress uniform, because the FDNY didn’t have the personnel to attend funerals of their fallen brethren. Everyone in the ride knew where they were on that day and had a personal connection to the towers.  The Ride For 9-11 was another chance for me to help and I wasn’t going to pass it up. I had never cycled more than 60 miles at a time, let alone in consecutive days.  The riders would be expected to cycle approximately 100 miles a day, through rain or shine, heat, humidity and mountains.  Crossing the US is a

edge of cycling over 100 miles made it seem an impossible task to cross the nation. But like everything in life, if you just keep moving or in our case, if you just keep pedaling we would get through it.  I went the first week with the ride to just outside Payson, AZ.  I flew back into Chicago along with Warren Sutton and Adam Loeser to finish the ride.   We were in Ohio before we knew it, surrounded by cornfields.... lots of cornfields.  Randy entertained all of us with another one of his crashes on a country road in the middle of nowhere.   In a few days we cycled into Kent, Ohio, the childhood home of Adam Loeser.  We received a hero’s welcome.  As we rounded the corner to the main street led in by a Kent Fire engine, the crowd was 4 deep on the sidewalk with streets lined with American flags.   People waving flags and

named Joe from NYFD who had lost many of his brethren on 9/11. He was riding with us the last day to NYC, to the NYFDs Fireman’s memorial on 100th and Riverside Drive, but we had a stop to make first.  We were cycling to Nottingham High School in Hamilton, NJ.  My brother is a gym teacher and my sister a counselor at the high school.  We arrived to meet the faculty and talk to the history classes that were in session.  It was September 9th and they were talking about 9/11.  The students in the classes were about 6 or 7 years old when the towers were hit, most don’t even remember that day or what America was like before 9/11.  I did my best to impress upon them how America had changed and everyone was affected that day and how our lives have changed since.  It seemed to have the most effect when Joe, the retired New York Fireman, welled up in tears

Photos By Adam VanGerpen

as he talked about that day. We then headed to NYC with one thing on our minds, getting to the memorial.  As I crossed the George Washington Bridge, I knew I was minutes from getting off the bike.  The Fire Hogs met us as we crossed and lead us with a NYFD fire truck to the memorial.   Reaching the Firefighter memorial in New York was amazing.  Friends, family and New York Firefighters waited.  On September 11, 2011, 2 days after we road into New York, myself, the riders and other Firefighters attended the 10-year memorial of 9/11.  As we stood in ranks in our dress uniform and listen to all of the 343 names read aloud, I gazed at the 343 American flags that stood across from me and the giant American flag where Jason Teter stood as a flag bearer.   He had cycled his road bike across the US unsupported in remembrance of 9/11.  There were days when an injury sidelined me after only half the mileage of that day and I could jump in the RV to recover.  Jason had no such luxury as he crossed the US.  I couldn’t even begin to imagine the trials he faced by himself.  As they read through the 343 names at the memorial, it finally dawned on me how big 343 really is.  In this world, we throw numbers around like million and billion like they are small, so anything in the hundreds sounds insignificant.  But, it must have taken well over an hour to read all the names, 343 is not a small number by any means.  I thought back to the Riders like Marv Williams, Scott Smith, Scott Hambly and Jorge Ostrovsky who pedaled every mile across this great nation, and even a few more down wrong roads only having to pedal back to get on the right one.  The rest of us suffered through injuries that sidelined us or couldn’t get the full time off from work.  Many people ask me why I did it and what I remember most about the ride.  I think back to some of the guys I road with, the people I met along the way, and the country I finally got to see that I served and fought for.  I did it so we will never forget the 343 Firefighters, the men and women fighting everyday in Afghanistan and Iraq, and all the people that died in the Pentagon, Flight 93 and the twin towers.

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Dedication, Sacrifice, and Commitment, are just a few words that describe the firefighters who took part in the journey from LA to NYC. Nearly a year of preparation went into putting the Ride For 9-11 together. There were numerous fund raisers, community events, sponsorship meetings, and phone calls that went into the ride. There were countless hours of time and energy put into the planning and logics prior to the event. A website was built at no cost so people could make donations

Los Angeles Firefighter

and follow the riders as they made there journey across the United States. A video crew also travelled with our firefighters and captured some amazing footage. This was a journey that the firefighters will never forget. These riders touched countless lives and they will remember the ride for the rest of there lives. While they were facing 120 degree heat in the desert and monsoon rain and wind they kept the number 343 on their minds. I am honored to be friends with these riders. By Adam VanGerpen, Editor

US Marine Corps Memorial

Notre Dame

(Continued from Page 1) From where I am standing I can see my wife and her two sisters. I think about how they have signed up for this also. I am happy that they are here participating in this. It’s good to know your family is behind you when the time comes to go to work. Its good to know they understand what they are a part off. Nicole is a nurse in the hospital. We both know what we signed up for .We know that if something big happens in Los Angeles that we may not talk for days. We know that we are a part of something bigger. Fireman Gerald T. Atwood, Ladder 21, I just want the names to stop. Almost like if I can stop the names, that many Firemen won’t really have to die. They don’t stop, the names continue on, and on. The lady on the street in front of me must be related to a Fireman she is visibly crying in pain. There is a lady consoling her. Fireman Gerard Baptise, Ladder 9, “Dang, this is

a lot of men .” Finally the names stop. I take a deep breath, are the names going to start again? There is silence for a moment and an Angel begins to sing Amazing Grace. I can not see her, yet I know she is an Angel, I can hear it in her voice. She sings it from her heart, from her soul. Then her voice begins to fade a little, then a crack, the Angel begins to weep. I hear men clearing their throats, trying to stop their noses from running, trying not to cry while standing tall. It’s no use, we have all been touched by this Angel. The Angel weeps until the crowd begins to thank her for her generosity with applause. Then she begins to sing with tears in her voice. Her song was unlike any I have ever heard. It was pure goodness cutting through me like a knife. I’m not sure what you believe in, this was undeniable, this was pure. We were in the presence of an Angel and she was singing for us. She opened the gates of heaven for us. For a brief moment we were allowed to look into the

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Warren Sutton


heavens, and then the Chaplain prayed. They presented a wreath as the Bag Pipes played. Voices from the past chanting through the sound of the pipes, the voices that say “Don’t Forget Me.” Taps played as a reminder of what we are willing to do for others. “Company, DISMISSED.” And just like that we were dismissed to return to our duty, our duty to serve. We turn and embrace the flag. We fold her up and replace her in her home. We pray she may rest in peace. We hope that she will never again see the things she has seen. We hope that her only job will be to make sure we honor what we have sworn to our fallen. “We Shall Never Forget!” By Jason Teter, LAFD

Photos By Adam VanGerpen

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Los Angeles Firefighter

LAFD hosted the “9/11 Remembrance Ceremony” dedicated to those who perished on September 11, 2001 at Frank Hotchkin Memorial Training Center Speakers included Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Fire Chief of the Los Angeles Fire Department, Brian L. Cummings, Fire Chief of the Los Angeles County Fire Department, Daryl L. Osby, Los Angeles Police Chief, Charlie Beck, Los Angeles County Assistant Sheriff, Marvin O. Cavanaugh, United States Coast Guard Captain of the Port, Roger LaFerriere, U.S. Congresswoman Janice

Hahn and Former Governor Gray Davis. The ceremony site near Elysian Park is especially noteworthy, due to the presence of two memorials dedicated to the events of September 11, 2001. The first memorial is dedicated to the World Trade Center and consists of a 23-ton, 22-foot tall steel column that was originally part of the lobby structure. This column is believed to be the largest remnant of the World Trade Center on the West Coast. The second memorial is located in the lobby of the adjacent training center and is

November / December 2011

titled “Towering Memories.” The “Towering Memories” memorial consists of two shapes similar to the silhouette of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center. Included on the memorial is a list of those who lost their lives at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the Pennsylvania plane crash site.

Scan to watch 9/11 video

Photos By Mike Meadows, EPN

Patriot Flag Photo By Shawn Kaye, EPN

Photo By Adam VanGerpen, Editor

November / December 2011

Los Angeles Firefighter

By Rick McClure

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By Mike Meadows

By Mike Meadows

By Mike Meadows

By Bernie Deyo

By Ryan Ling

By Juan Guerra

By Ryan Ling

By MIke Meadows

By Ryan Babroff

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Los Angeles Firefighter

The Passionately Pink for the Cure campaign helps IAFF affiliates participate in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month by providing tools and resources to use in their own communities and events. All donations collected online in connection with the IAFF Passionately Pink campaign will be shared equally by the IAFF Charitable Foundation and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. This exciting new program is designed to complement the IAFF resolution passed at the 2010 Convention that supports and encourages IAFF members to participate in campaigns to help fight cancer. Susan G. Komen Passionately Pink for the Cure offers a great way for IAFF members to contribute to the cause. To join the IAFF Passionately Pink campaign team, click here. Through this web site, IAFF af-

November / December 2011

Passionately Pink for the Cure

filiates can register using “IAFF” in their campaign name to create a personalized fundraising web page for secure online donations and access to free tools and resources - including educational materials, fundraising ideas, downloadable posters and flyers. IAFF affiliates that join the IAFF Passionately Pink campaign team will receive a fundraising kit with breast health information, promo posters, donation reply forms and return envelopes and 25 lapel pins. Additional lapel pins and other breast cancer awareness items are available through the IAFF Online Store. Funds raised during the October campaign will be split equally between the IAFF Charitable Foundation and Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The IAFF Charitable Foundation Inaugural Gala, held August 16 in New York City, celebrated

the official launch of this newly restructured organization that expands the scope of its charitable funds to better support and meet the ongoing needs of IAFF members and their families. For more information about the IAFF Charitable Foundation, go to: This year UFLAC went Passionately Pink For the Cure. We ordered pink UFLAC t-shirts and handed them out at the Ratification Meeting. We also set up a personal page for UFLAC through a Susan G. Komen website to try and raise some money for finding the cure to cancer. goto/local112

We hope to make this an annual event and do more and more every year. Thank you to those who participated and wore Pink.

Firefighter of The Year Nominations

On November 30, 2011, the Los Angeles City Firefighter’s Association will vote on this year’s “2011 Firefighter of the Year”. This honor of distinction and recognition is given to a member of any rank, who, not by any single act, has distinguished him/herself as one of outstanding character, dedication, and loyalty to the Department, the Fire Service, and to the citizens of the community. To be eligible for consideration, nominees must have been an active LAFD member for at least one day during the nominating year, and a member of the Los Angeles City Firefighters Asso-

ciation. Candidates will be judged on an overall career and life that exemplifies the best qualities of those who are honored to be part of the fire service. If you know of such a person, and would like to nominate him/ her for this prestigious award, submit your application NO LATER than November 28, 2011, to any one of the nominating committee members listed below. The nomination must include the nominees name, rank, assignment and a statement of why the member should receive the award. Photos and other documentation may also be submitted.

Please attend the Los Angeles City Firefighter’s Association meeting on November 30, 2011. The meeting will take place at 0830 in the Fire Station 59 Training classroom, Show up at 11505 Olympic Blvd. and present your nomination IN PERSON. All Los Angeles City Firefighter’s Association members are welcome, and encouraged to attend the meeting and presentations, and to show support for the individuals being nominated. Presentations may be subject to time limits depending on the number of nominations received in order to provide fairness to all nominees. These time limits will

November 10, 2011 marks the 20th Annual USMC Birthday Celebration at LAFD. All Marines (past and present) and friends of the Corps are invited. The Marine Corps in commemorating 236 years of service to the United States of America. Marines all over the world gather in celebration no matter where they are.

The celebration of history, pride, and tradition will take place at the LAFD Museum at Old Fire Station 27. We will have a traditional cake cutting ceremony with the oldest and youngest Marines present. The Commandant message will be played and Marine Corps items will be on display. You are encouraged to invite

fellow Marines who have never been to this great event. It’s a great time to swap stories and meet new people. Raffle prizes will be available for those of you who no longer go to the exchange. Come and see who this years guest speaker will be. Last year we had a Marine who was on Iwo Jima. Semper Fi

be announced prior to the start of the November 30, 2011 membership meeting and will be strictly enforced. The nominee cannot be present during the meeting. The election will be held in closed executive session following the nominations, and only members of the Los Angeles City Firefighter’s Association Board will vote. Following personal notification of the winner by the Vice President, a public announcement will be made by Department teletype. For additional information on how to nominate somebody for Firefighter of the Year please go to the LAFFA website or LAFFA

Facebook Page. You can also contact members of the Nomination Committee. 2011 FIREFIGHTER OF THE YEAR COMMITTEE George James, (661) 433-4679 James S. Dolan, (562) 400-1298 Adam VanGerpen (818)486-9939

Nominations Due November 28th

USMC Birthday Celebration - November 10th

November / December 2011

Los Angeles Firefighter

Uniformed firefighters, family members and dignitaries from throughout California gathered Saturday to pay tribute to those who gave their lives to protect the lives and property of Californians. Continuing a solemn and sobering autumn tradition, the California Firefighters Memorial added the names of 30 California firefighters who fell in the line of duty. Located in historic Capitol Park, adjoining the California State Capitol in Sacramento, the Memorial carries the names of more than 1,200 firefighters who died in service since California became a state in 1850. “Today, we honor 30 firefighters who gave their lives in service to our state and their communities,” Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. said. “Their bravery, commitment and sacrifice will

not be forgotten.” Eighteen firefighters who died from traumatic injuries or jobrelated illnesses in the past 12 months were honored at the October 1, 2011 ceremony, as well as 12 others from earlier years that were brought to the California Fire Foundation’s attention in 2011. Among the names added to the Memorial Saturday were San Francisco Lieutenant Vincent Perez and San Francisco Firefighter Anthony Valerio. Both men died battling a June 2, 2011 structure fire in San Francisco’s first multiple line-of-duty death in 60 years. “The 30 individuals whose names we add to it today represent the best of our state and its people,” said Lou Paulson, Chair of the California Fire Foundation and President of California Pro-

On October 8, 2011 Los Angeles Fire Chief Brian Cummings and members of the Los Angeles Fire Department past and present were joined by civic and community leaders as well as friends of the LAFD, at the 2011 Fallen Firefighter Memorial Ceremony in Hollywood . The Fallen Firefighters Memorial is situated in the heart of Hollywood, just outside Old Fire Station 27 on Cahuenga Blvd. The dramatic plaza is home to a memorial wall, listing the names of every known department member who died while at an incident or as a result of a duty-related cause.

The Fallen Firefighters Memorial is situated in the heart of Hollywood, just outside Old Fire Station 27 on Cahuenga Blvd. The dramatic plaza is home to a memorial wall, listing the names of every known department member who died while at an incident or as a result of a duty-related cause. Pictured to the right is the family of Glenn Allen and crew.

By Rudy Santiago, Apparatus Operator, (Retired) On Sept. 3 I headed out to Flagstaff, AZ to meet with other IAFF/MG riders to NYC for the 10th Memorial service of our 343 fallen Brothers. These were District 10 members of the M.G. from Long Beach Fire, Cal Fire, Anaheim Fire and Flagstaff Fire Depts. From Flagstaff we headed up to Glenwood Springs, CO where we met with other M.G. riders from District 9. They rode their own route to NYC but we did spend the evening together talking about our different depts. and sharing stories. Our next stop was in Lincoln, NE were the Local there opened

fessional Firefighters. “In adding their names to this proud Memorial, we pay tribute to their honor and sense of duty, and we commit to their loved ones that we will always remember what they gave for our state.”

Saturday’s Memorial ceremony also included a moving tribute by Vallejo firefighter Brett Smith, whose friend and colleague – Alameda City firefighter Scott Carnevale -- died earlier this year of

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job-related cancer. “The men and women whose names are on this wall traded every tomorrow they would ever know to do a job most would not be able to do,” said Smith. “That is dedication. That is honorable. That is how we should remember them.” The centerpiece of the annual firefighters memorial ceremony is the presentation of flags to the families, friends and representatives of every one of the individuals being honored. The tribute also features a solemn uniformed firefighter procession and the traditional “Last Alarm” ceremony, in which a fire bell is rung to signify a fallen firefighter’s final call to duty. Unveiled in April of 2002, the California Firefighters Memorial features two stunning statues and a dramatic Memorial Wall on

which the names of 1,206 fallen firefighters are engraved. The Memorial was created without any state funding through private contributions to the California Fire Foundation. Most of the more than $2 million was raised to build and maintain the Memorial was raised directly from firefighters through the purchase of firefighter license plates and a state tax check-off. The California Fire Foundation is a non-profit charitable organization created by California Professional Firefighters in 1987 whose mandate includes an array of public education and victim assistance projects. California Professional Firefighters (CPF) represents 30,000 career firefighters and paramedics. It has over 170 affiliated local unions, and is the State Council for the International Association of Fire Fighters.

Photo By Mike Meadows, EPN

up their Union Hall to us and 30 or so riders from another District heading for NY. They had pizzas, and beverages for us to enjoy and their bag-pipers performed a few numbers for us. The display of Brotherhood in our fire service was absolutely incredible there. The next morning we picked up two of the Nebraska firefighters as we continued on our journey east. Our next stop was the HarleyDavidson dealership in Ottawa, IL were the local there arranged to host a BBQ for us and another group of union riders going to NY. I believe it was there District riders from the Illinois area because there were about 20 or more bikes that came in after we did. The steaks and the extras were delicious to say the least. Again the hospitality was unbelievable. As we rode along the interstates to NY I had my C.B. radio on and tuned into the truckers channel. It was very interesting to hear their comments about us as we rode past some of them. For some reason a lot of them thought we were bikers coming home for the Sturgis Rally until I would tell them what we were riding for. Usually

there would be a pause and then they would wish us well on our ride and thank us for what we do as well as paying us condolences for losing our Brothers that day. When we finally arrived in Newbaugh, N.Y., home of Orange County Choppers, we were met by an overwhelming sight of motorcycles from all over the country and Canada. On the morning of the 11th, we all rode to the motorcycle museum in Newbaugh were we all formed up in our respective Districts to make our way to New York City. First we drove past the Newbaugh Fallen Firefighter Memorial before returning to OCC. The ride down to NYC was police escorted all of the way. All of the on-ramps on the New York Thruway were closed by the police and the toll booths were open for us to drive through. Any vehicles that were on the thruway as the procession pasted were stopped at the toll booths. As we made our way into the city and the memorial the streets near the memorial were lined, unofficial, with members of the FDNY and the EMS service as well as the NYPD. They were

waving at us, giving us thumbs up and clapping as we rode past. I spoke with several FDNY Brothers who were amazed that we had ridden in from all over the country and Canada and were very grateful for us doing that. After an invocation by a Chaplain from the FDNY, President Schaitberger gave a very nice and fairly short speech. When the proceedings were over with everyone left to go and explore the city or back to Newbaugh. I had made plans to stay in the city for a couple of nights before heading west to Colorado for the annual IAFF Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Colorado Springs, CO. If you have never been to Colorado Springs for the IAFF Memorial there then you are missing out on one of the most heart warming experiences of being a firefighter and a union member. It is unfortunate that we have to have this memorial because it means we have lost a Brother or Sister firefighter. But it brings us all together to honor their memory and life. As a firefighter and a union member I urge each and every one of you to go and see the wall. The sculpture of the firefighter

on the ladder and the one of the firefighter resting are an inspiration to us all and a reminder of the job we do and why we do it. The granite wall with the names of our members is a stark realization of the hazards we all face each and every time the alarm goes off. Among the names that were added to the wall this year were two of our very own, Gary Clark and Glenn Allen. It matters not what dept, or even what country the firefighter is from, we were all there to honor each one of them. Local 5 of Colorado Springs maintains the memorial and for them it was especially hard this year because they had one of their own added to the wall. When the bag-pipers and drummers come marching out and they start playing Amazing Grace, I have said this before, even the most harden of us will not have a dry eye. It’s about paying respect, honor and a tribute to those that paid the ultimate price in the line of work we have chosen. Rest well my Brothers and Sisters; you have answered your last alarm.

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Los Angeles Firefighter

November / December 2011


AB-678 Medi-Cal Ground Emergency Medical Transport

CPF-sponsored legislation allowing local fire departments to be reimbursed by the federal government for Medi-Cal emergency transport services is on its way to Governor Brown. AB 678 would allow local fire departments to submit certified public expenditures for unreimbursed Medi-Cal ground emergency medical transportation services to the Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) for reimbursement by the federal government. This bill would further require participating agencies to reimburse DHCS for related administrative expenses. The bill is authored by Assembly Member

Richard Pan (D - Sacramento), . As California’s health system continues to deteriorate, the local fire department in its first response capacity participates in transporting Medi-Cal patients at an ever increasing rate. Specifically, ambulance transports have increased 13% from 1997 to 2006 and ambulance transports of Medi-Cal beneficiaries increased 19% from 2006 to 2009. Further, Medicare rates in California were reduced 10% in 2010, representing a reduction of $35 million statewide, thereby straining fire department budgets even more. California’s ambulances will provide approximately 3.1 mil-

lion transports this year. Nearly 300,000 of those will be MediCal patients, and up to half of whom will be transported by fire departments. Depending on the demographics the percentage of those patients can range from 10% to 35% of a fire department’s total transport volume. Historically, Medi-Cal has not kept up with the cost of inflation or healthcare and current MediCal rates do not cover the operating cost of a typical ambulance transport. These non-reimbursed costs are subsequently absorbed into a fire department’s General Fund and paid for by the taxpayers. The California Department of

IAFF Political Training Academy

The 2012 Political Training Academy application period is now open. Developed through FIREPAC, the IAFF Political Training Academy educates and assists campaign veterans and political newcomers alike on how to run for elected office, manage a political campaign or direct an affiliate’s political action program. More than 700 IAFF members have graduated from the Political Training Academy, and over 300 IAFF members and their relatives currently hold elective office. Held once a year, the Political Training Academy is a weeklong, hands-on political training course taught by outside campaign experts and IAFF staff. Seminars focus on issues of concern to politically active fire fighters, such as developing an effective campaign plan; targeting voters; recruiting volunteers; mastering polling, fundraising and budgeting; developing an effective message; working with the press; getting out the vote; and complying with campaign fi-

By Mike Hall AFL-CIO Union members joined Occupy St. Louis protestors and community activists for a more than 1,000- strong march and rally through downtown as part of the AFL-CIO’s America Wants to Work National Week of Action. Across the nation, union members held more than 200 events demanding Congress focus on a real jobs creation agenda and speaking out—often in conjunction with the Occupy Wall Street actions in cities around the nation—against Big Banks and Wall Street greed. In St. Louis UAW member Linda Alford told the St. Louis Beacon, “Our wages are going down,” and corporate profits are going up. These corporations are so

nance laws. IAFF members or family members who are running for public office, managing a campaign or implementing a political program for an IAFF local should consider applying for the IAFF Political Training Academy. The skills learned at the Academy are invaluable for all political activists at all levels. Regular past instructors at the Political Training Academy include many former senior staff from the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), a former director of the AFL-CIO’s National Labor Political Training Center, and nationally renowned polling expert Celinda Lake. How do I apply to the Political Training Academy? All applicants for the IAFF Political Training Academy must complete and submit the online Political Training Academy application. Each applicant must also submit a letter of recommendation

from his or her local president. Letters of recommendation can be faxed to (202) 783-4570, emailed to, or mailed to the IAFF Political Department at: 1750 New York Avenue NW, Washington, DC, 20006. Due to the intensive, interactive nature of the Political Training Academy, class size is limited to 50 participants per year. Accordingly, the IAFF requests that each local recommend only one applicant per year. The IAFF and FIREPAC pay for the cost of all housing, food and training materials for attendees of the Academy. Attendees are only responsible for the cost of their transportation to and from the Academy. Acceptance into the Political Training Academy is based on the applicant’s reason for attending, the number of previous attendees from a given local, geographic diversity considerations, and the history of FIREPAC contributions by the applicant and his or her local.

Health Care Services has identified an existing federal program that provides a 50% match of unreimbursed expenses to local agencies who provide Medi-Cal ground emergency medical transportation services. Federal money is being left on the table. The sooner this voluntary program is up and running, the sooner local fire departments can access much needed fiscal relief and continue providing these critical safety net services. AB 678 was approved unanimously by the Assembly Health Committee on April 5, 2011. This bill was then referred to the As-

IAFF Endorsements

Once your local has made an endorsement of a candidate, there are numerous ways in which you can assist that candidate and his or her campaign to be victorious on election day. It is important to consider these options within the framework of your budget and available resources. In addition, it is critical to honestly assess your resources and capabilities in order to ensure you are an asset to your candidate. Remember, it is better to under-promise and over-deliver on your ability to contribute to the campaign, rather

America Wants to Work

greedy. They’re not willing to pay their taxes or give poor people and the middle class a chance. Minnesota unions, along with other groups, held more than a dozen actions across the state. Barb Kucera, Workday Minnesota editor reports: Six hundred Minnesotans marched in downtown Minneapolis on Friday to the offices of USBank and Wells Fargo to demand that the big banks pay their fair share, invest in good jobs and fix the foreclosure crisis. In Vermont Saturday, hundreds of union members joined in four rallies. Vermont AFLCIO Political Director Dennis LaBounty told the Burlington Free Press: By having events like these across the country, hopefully we

can get more people to join in solidarity and get the attention of Washington, D.C. The message needs to get through that the rich should pay their fair share and that you can’t balance the budget on the backs of working men and women. “We need jobs, not cuts,” Louisiana AFL-CIO Secretary Treasurer Julie Cherry told a big rally on the steps of the state capitol in Baton Rouge, La. The group began a chant aimed at Big Banks and corporations that dodge their taxes, “One, two, three four, play your taxes a like the poor.” In Chicago, hundreds of union members from the Chicago Federation of Labor (CFL) rallied in Federal Plaza calling for “Jobs, not Cuts” before marching with Occupy Chicago through

sembly Appropriations Committee where it was approved unanimously on May 27, 2011. AB 678 was approved on the Assembly Floor 76-1 on June 2, 2011. It was then referred to the Senate Health Committee where it was approved unanimously on June 22, 2011. The measure won final approval in the Senate on September 2nd, and On October 2nd, 2011 Governor Brown proudly signed this bill into law effective immediately.

the city’s the financial district. Click here for a photo slide show. Union members and Occupy Louisville [Ky.] supporters held a joint rally where Bryan O’Neill, Secretary Treasurer of Fire Fighters (IAFF) Local 345, told the crowd, “Over 10 million jobs in our economy have been shed. Corporate profits since 2008 are up 44 percent while we lose jobs, we lose homes. Bonuses since the financial bailout of 2008 are over $30 billion.” If an arsonist were to go out tonight and burn down somebody’s home and leave that one family homeless—if they catch that person they are going to jail–as they should. However, if you were a banker, and you leveraged some faulty mortgage swaps, and you put

then over-promise and under-deliver. No matter what your resource limitations, there are a variety of ways to make a contribution to a campaign. Each method of activism varies as it relates to cost, time commitment, number of volunteers and other factors. It is important to consider all of these factors and how they will affect your overall plan when deciding the best course of action.

thousands of families out on the street, do you see the inside of a jail cell? No. You get a bonus and a bail out for making thousands of people homeless. That’s the way our economy is working. That’s what we see the corporate and financial powers doing to us.

November / December 2011

Los Angeles Firefighter

2011-2012 UFLAC Executive Board PRESIDENT

Pat McOsker, Engineer................................... Fire Station 101-A


Jeff Dapper, Captain I....................................Fire Station 95-B


Frank Lima, Captain II.................................. UFLAC Office


Brian Hishinuma, Captain II......................... Fire Station 49-A


Adam Knabe, Firefighter/Paramedic............Fire Station 87-A


Freddy Escobar, Apparatus Operator.......... Fire Staion 26-C Mike Tobey, Captain/Paramedic................... EMS 1-C Chuong Ho, Firefighter................................... Fire Station 105-C Tony Gamboa, Apparatus Operator............. UFLAC Office Ted Nonini, Firefighter/Staff Assistant.......... Fire Station 42-B


Mike McOsker, ............................................... UFLAC Office


Nancy Mraz, CEAP......................................... UFLAC Office


Adam VanGerpen, Firefighter / Paramedic..Fire Station 75-A

In Memory Of...

James A. Perry

Editor from 1969-2009

Services Directory

The Los Angeles Firefighter

(ISSN #0190-7573) Local 112, IAFF, AFL-CIO-CLC Official Publication of the United Firefighters of Los Angeles City is Published Bi-Monthly Periodical Postage paid at Los Angeles, CA Known Office of Publication is United Firefighters of Los Angeles City, 1571 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, California 90026-5798 POSTMASTER: Send Address Changes to The Los Angeles Firefighter 1571 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90026-5798

Union Office Phone Numbers Administration:

(213) 895-4006 - (213) 485-2091 - Toll Free (800) 252-8352 Benefits:

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FAX: (213) 250-5678


EAP Office: (213) 895-0910 or (800) 252-8352 EAP FAX: (213) 481-1038 EAP 24 Hr. Help Line

Answering Service: (213) 250-1212 Affiliations International Assn. of Fire Fighters, AFL-CIO-CLC California Professional Fire Fighters, AFL-CIO L.A. County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO California Labor Federation, AFL-CIO American Federation of Labor International Labor Communications Association, AFL-CIO-CLC Contributing Photographers Mike Meadows, Juan Guerra, Adam VanGerpen, Shawn Kaye,Yvonne Griffin, Jeff Zimmerman, Reuben Chan, David DeMulle, Rick McClure, John Conkle, Ryan Babroff, Ryan Ling, Bernie Deyo, Haylee Solomon, Cheryl Goddard, EPN This union newspaper is printed by a union printer on union-made recycled paper.

(2nd Pay Period of Every Month)

9:00 a.m., November 16 , 2011, Wednesday, “B” Shift Working

360 East Second Street, Suite 400 Los Angeles, CA 90012 (213) 978-4545

9:00 a.m., December 28, 2011, Wednesday, “C” Shift Working Location – James A. Perry Labor Center

1571 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90026


Refreshments and Free Parking Available

Applying for a Service Pension (213) 978-4575 Applying for a Disability Pension (213) 978-4500 Applying for DROP participation (213) 978-4568 Buying Back Time (Academy Time, Bad Time, Prior Service) (213) 978-4522 Contribution Statements (For Divorce, Loans, Verification of Contribution) (213) 978-4522 Pre-Retirement Planning Seminars (213) 978-4522 Refund of Contributions (213) 978-4522 Domestic Partner Information (213) 978-4522

Name, Address & Telephone Number Changes (213) 978-4575

IAFF and AFL-CIO affiliates have prior approval to reprint or excerpt articles in the Los Angeles Firefighter — Please include credit line. Note: Photos and cartoons may not be reprinted without the expressed written permission of the photographer or artist.

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This emblem on the masthead of any labor publication certifies that the publication is a member in good standing of the International Labor Communications Association and is bound to observe the ILCA Code of Ethics.

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Cost of Living (213) 978-4495 Direct Deposit (213) 978-4495 Tax Withholding (213) 978-4495 1099Rs (Year-End Tax Statements) (213) 978-4420 Health/Dental Subsidy (213) 978-4560 Health/Dental Plans: Fire Relief (Health Only) (800) 244-3439 UFLAC (800) 252-8352

If You See An Error…

The Los Angeles Firefighter strives to maintain accuracy and fairness in all stories, graphics, photographs and other copy that appears in our union newspaper. It is our practice to correct errors in the issue immediately following their discovery. If you have a correction or clarification request, please call the UFLAC office at (800) 252-8352 or email us at

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Station Stewards November / December 2011

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Mark B. Stafford David Braun Michael Seiser Edward Larini Charles Garcia Mario A. Garcia Nicholas Gonzales Mark Kleckner Felipe Villegas Adrian Vasquez Kevin Willis Gregory C. Malais Ryan Jacob Cameron R. Kennedy Harold Raphael Hector Hernandez Ted Nonini Craig Poulson Daniel Foote Christopher Martinez Rigo Arellano Richard Shortle Ruben Terrazas John Balich Charles Garcia David Raya Chris Stellern Hector M. Hernandez Stephen Meiche Oliver Fry Jose Holguin Christopher Bustamante Ryan Howes Ed Campos John Marasco Anthony R. Temple Marc Samama Raymond Cuevas Shawn Connolly Adam M. VanGerpen Daniel Castillo Francisco “Frank” Hurtado M. Benjamin J. Rossell Scott Carter Brendan O’Connor Benjamin R. Guzman Thomas G. Chamberlin John Maestri Charles Herrera Jeff Rickey Daniel Mattera Christopher Contreras John Cardenas Alicia Mathis James Krebs Dario Reyes Pat McOsker George James Robergt Perez Glen A. Kratkin Keith Massey Harold Hix John Donato Jacob Ryan Scott Miller Russell K. Rawls

Station Stewards Meetings Time: 7:30 a.m. Prior to Monthly Membership Meetings (Same location as the Membership Meeting)

Union Stewards Needed

We are in the process of reorganizing and updating our Union Stewards Program. It is our goal to have a Union Steward at every work location. Current and prospective Stewards are requested to contact the James A. Perry Labor Center at (800) 252-8352.

Newspaper Mailing List

If you are receiving this newspaper and have a change of address or would like to be removed from our mailing list, please call the union office at (800) 252-8352, Ext. 208 or email Maria Riggs at

Page 16

Los Angeles Firefighter

By Adam VanGerpen, Editor 9/11 Tributes This issue of the Los Angles Firefighter has been dedicated to memories of those who paid the ultimate sacrifice and those whose lives were innocently lost on 9-11-11. Numerous firefighters from Los Angeles participated in tributes to 9/11. We tried to highlight a few of the tributes in this edition. I am good friends with several of the members of Ride For 9-11 and was witness to the extreme amount of dedication that went into planning the ride and completing the 3300 mile journey from Los Angeles to New York City. I also followed Jason Teter’s blog as he cycled in his solo Tribute to Brotherhood. He blogged

VanGerpen Family

about his journey across the US that renewed his faith in the Fire Service and the fact that America has Not Forgotten. The Fire Hogs rode their Harley’s across the US in a Ride to Remember tribute. Not only did they honor those lost on 9/11 but they honored a retired LAFD member and Fire Hog Gary “Stamy” Stameisen . His untimely passing did not allow him to make the ride but his memory, his Harley, and his wife Lori make the ride in his honor.

November / December 2011

tion for iPhone and Droid. This is a free application that you can download from the www.uflac. org. If you have a scanner app on your phone scan the QR Code below:

Passionately Pink

This year UFLAC teamed up with IAFF and Susan G. Komen and went Passionately Pink for the Cure. Pink Local 112 t-shirts were handed out for donations during the Ratification Meetings. UFLAC now has 1000 members who Care Enough to Wear Pink. If you would like to make a donation to the Local-112 Passionately Pink Team you can still do so by logging in at: goto/local112

Social Media

We have made drastic improvements during the last few months in our communications. I would like to encourage all members to follow UFLAC on Facebook and Twitter. In an effort to keep the membership informed with real time information please “LIKE” the UFLAC Facebook page. We post daily updates on issues effecting our firefighters and firefighters across the country. We also encourage you to post comments on our Facebook page so we may better assist you. By following @UFLAC on twitter you can get updates directly to you phone usually with hyperlinks. If the topic interests you simply click on the link to find out more information. One of our newest tools to keep members informed is the UFLAC Smart Phone Applica-

Scan QR Code or go to:

UFLAC Website

If you have not been to the UFLAC website lately log in right now and see the complete overhaul we gave it. We now have a more modern website with up to date information. The website is integrated with Facebook and Twitter. We are constantly updating it and looking for new ways to improve it. We welcome suggestions and have several plans in place to make it better.

Getting Involved

We recently had a UFLAC meeting at FS-87 in the valley. Having the General Membership meeting in a different location got members to go who have never been to a meeting. There are plans for additional locations for meetings in order to get even more members involved. This years Ratification Vote had more membership involvement than ever before. We realize many members have other commitments and family obligations that to not allow them to be as involved as they may like. Following UFLAC on Facebook, Twitter, and the website will help you to stay involved. Talk to your Station Stewards and communicate with your Board members. They cannot address you concerns if they do not know what your concerns are.


We have all been effected by the current economy and many of you were recently displaced with the new deployment plan. We still have the greatest job in the world and are very fortunate in comparison to other fire departments across the country. We have not had to lay anybody off and recently ratified a contract with a no furlough clause. LAFD Firefighter Jason Teter wrote about his journey across the country and seemed to put everything into perspective. As Jason traveled across the country

on his bike he mostly stayed at Firehouses. In many parts of the country fire fighting is not just a job but it is a way of life. Many firefighters across the country are paid little to nothing for there services and are true public servants. We sometimes forget how it felt the day we put on our badges. We forget how hard we worked to get hired. We forget how much the Fire Service has given to us and our families. WE MUST NEVER FORGET

LAFD Blog Receives Top Honors

Paul Carroll Photo By Jim Perry

With Best Wishes for a Happy and Fire-Safe Holiday Season and Throughout the New Year From United Firefighters of Los Angeles City Local 112, IAFF, AFL-CIO-CLC

Please join us at the James A. Perry Labor Center for a Holiday Party.

December 2, 2011 (4:30 to 8:30)

The IAFF received 234 entries in the 2011 Media Awards Contest - all of which reflect the expanding role fire fighters play in communities across North America. This competition pays tribute to those who, in the public media and through their affiliates, document the great and the small in the life of fire fighters everywhere. LAFD News and Information produced by Erik Scott and Brian Humphrey took 1st place in the new category of BEST BLOG. The LAFD Blog Spot provides news and updates from the Los Angeles Fire Department. This easily accessible and organized blog allows the public and fire fighters to stay on the same page with the common goal of main-

taining public safety through awareness. The LAFD News & Information is the creation of Brian Humphrey and is currently being be maintained with the outstanding assistance of Erik Scott, and Matt Spence. UFLAC Received Honorable Mention for “Your Union Benefits” This detailed brochure

on medical and dental open enrollment plans available to Local 112 members is a useful resource that explains union benefits. Adam VanGerpen, Editor of The Los Angeles Firefighter also received an Honorable Mention in the category, “Affiliate Publication – Over 1,000 Circulation.”

IAFF - BEST BLOG Award Winners

Erik Scott

Brian Humphrey

Los Angeles Firefighter Newspaper NovDec2011  
Los Angeles Firefighter Newspaper NovDec2011 United Firefighters of Los Angeles City - IAFF Local 112: