Oolitic Teens Learn to Become Firefighters
OOLITIC - (January 18, 2022) - There are four young men who work together as a team, and now they are learning the trade of firefighting. Their teamwork was evident as they coordinated efforts during Oolitic's first Christmas on Main Street last month.
On Monday, Ethan Robinson, Chandler Turner, Hunter Morris, and Paul Fields began their training to become Indiana State Certified Firefighters.
Ethan is in 10th grade at Bedford-North Lawrence High School. " I always wanted to be able to help people, and be a part of the fire department," said Robinson.
Ethan become involved in the fire department last summer. Oolitic Fire Chief Ted Maze encouraged Ethan to be part of his firefighting team. Ethan has learned to help keep the station, truck, and equipment clean. Ethan has helped get hose lines to fire hydrants and help get equipment to firefighters as needed. Ethan has helped direct traffic and other tasks that they ask him to do.
Ethan's desire is to become a career firefighter and go to bigger places.
Ethan has already been trained in CPR, and EMR (Emergency Medical Responder) - Ethan is a quarterback for the Unified Team at Bedford North Lawrence High School.
Chandler Turner has always lived across from the fire department and the firefighters have always given Chandler a positive influence. " Zac Bell has always been a guy a have looked up to ever since the third grade. I am glad now, that I am at the point in learning how to save lives. I enjoy doing this for free, and helping our community," said Turner.
Chandler is a junior at Bedford - North Lawrence High School, Chandler completed CPR training and is excited about beginning his firefighting training and EMR training.
" I have learned about teamwork and communications skills with others. Turner has learned how firefighters communicate with one another both inside a fire building and those outside. Communicating the needs to one another to work to get things accomplished.
Turner stated he has learned how to use proper tools, know who you is around and be able to act and react to any given situation.
Turner plans is to stay in the Oolitic area and continue to volunteer. Turner would like to become a firefighter for the Monroe Fire Protection District, or manufacturing job.
Hunter interest in firefighting comes after his uncle was a volunteer firefighter for the City of Mitchell. Since the age of five Hunter has always wanted to be a firefighter. " This is probably one of the coolest things in my life right now," said Morris.
" I have learned how to run the pumps on the fire engines, learning what kind of equipment is needed to complete certain task, proper use of turnout gear, and air packs," Morris added.
Morris has started EMR and basic firefighting class and has responded on various medical emergencies.
However, Morris's interest in the firefighting part of the fire service.
Hunter Morris is a Senior at Bedford North Lawrence High School; in his career he is going to trade school and learn the carpentry trade. Building construction is an important knowledge for firefighting especially with the safety in each building design as firefighters fight the fire.
Morris has been on the BNLHS Wrestling team for over the last three years and played football in middle school.
Paul Fields is in ninth grade at Bedford North Lawrence High School and his interest in firefighting began ever since he knew what it was. When Fields moved to Oolitic he took advantage of the opportunity to become a part of the fire department.
"Ethan Robinson and Chandler Turner encouraged me to be part of the fire department," said Fields. " I have learned commitment and what is required to make sure tasks get completed,"
Fields is learning how to operate the pumps on the trucks and learning about the hose and nozzle work various functions and uses of each.
Fields other hobbies and sports include golfing and cycling. Fields is working towards a career in firefighting and moving on from there. " I am excited about our training," said Fields
The Oolitic Junior Firefighter Program allows those age 15 and up to apply to the fire department. Once approved they are some guidelines and rules that must be followed. But this gives an opportunity for the youth to be part of the fire department.
The Junior firefighters will complete both EMR and Basic Firefighting training with certification following the completion of the course.