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William Knight's Blog (10)

Am I My Brotherhood's Keeper?

“Brotherhood is dead.”

I’ve witnessed that same sentence uttered or typed several times in the last few weeks.  It’s out and out poppycock.  Balderdash.  Claptrap.  Malarkey. 

If service and selflessness are the foundation of this profession, then brotherhood is the mortar that holds all the other pieces of our house together.  Without brotherhood, we fall apart.  There are those in the fire service that truly do not appreciate that fact, nor do they care about…

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Added by William Knight on July 28, 2015 at 4:46pm — No Comments

David v. Goliath et Al. (Haters Gonna Hate)

At times, it can be overwhelming.  That desire to do great things, crushed hopelessly underfoot, trodden into the mud beneath an army of detractors marching against you.  Seemingly insurmountable odds and an enemy that looms over you and hurls taunts and discouragements. 

Bear with me, heathens, for we are about to delve into an Old Testament tale of victory in the face of overwhelming opposition from all sides.  It is a tale thousands of years old, but it has direct parallels…

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Added by William Knight on July 12, 2015 at 4:32pm — 2 Comments

A Little Sunday Gospel

“But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.”

                              -2 Thessalonians 3:13

 

Don’t get tired of doing the right thing.  That’s what the verse above means, taken at its face.  But to gain a more complete understanding of how it applies to today’s fire service, let’s dig deeper into it, and other verses penned long ago.

First, a little background knowledge.  First and Second Thessalonians were epistles, or letters, written in…

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Added by William Knight on February 15, 2015 at 8:00pm — No Comments

The RIT Reality

RIT, RIT, RIT.  We read a lot of the same information about it, and we’ve been reading it for a long time.  Specifically, “proactive RIT” has been pushed for over a decade now.  RIT is a good thing; having a team on standby to dive into the fray and rescue one of our own is absolutely one of the many priorities at most fires.  But let’s dig a little deeper into this dominating theme in RIT training.

Proactive RIT means having a RIT crew that doesn’t just stand in one spot like…

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Added by William Knight on December 29, 2014 at 9:33am — No Comments

Imperfect Pitch

It used to be that ventilating residential fires was pretty straightforward.  Even today, the process hasn’t changed, but the difficulties encountered while completing the task have multiplied.  Difficult roofs aren’t new; commercial flat roofs have long been a tough cookie to crack, with an infinite number of roof material combinations and challenges that pop up right in the middle of the cut.  With today’s engineering capabilities and ever-changing building construction technology,…

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Added by William Knight on December 4, 2014 at 4:43pm — No Comments

I Shouldn't Have to Write This

As I write this, I am deeply saddened and disappointed at the fact that what follows even needs to be written. 

 

We are firemen.  We are human.  Humans make mistakes, and firemen probably make more than the average human.  With that understanding, I want to address a problem that afflicts society as a whole, but has really affected my department and several other local departments significantly over the years. 

 

Drunk driving.

 

I loathe drunk…

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Added by William Knight on October 7, 2014 at 8:30pm — No Comments

Unselfishness

This is the beginning of a series on fire service leadership traits.  I'll be borrowing heavily from the Marine Corps Leadership Traits and Principles, because they have direct application to our mission and purpose.  I have never been in the military, but I was enrolled in Marine Corps Junior ROTC in high school.  On my transcripts, the official name of the class was listed as Leadership Education.  It was in MCJROTC that I first encountered the 14 Leadership Traits and 11 Leadership…

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Added by William Knight on September 16, 2014 at 2:50pm — No Comments

Grace Under Fire

Stress Inoculation

Stress inoculation is primarily a psychology term.  Much like being inoculated with a vaccine against a disease, stress inoculation seeks to relieve current and prevent future acute stress-related problems.  The most common use of stress inoculation in psychology is dealing with PTSD and its long-term effects.  Through stress inoculation, the patient becomes more able to manage stress in healthy ways.  As it pertains to psychology, stress inoculation…

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Added by William Knight on September 9, 2014 at 2:00pm — No Comments

Uniformity of Appearance vs. Uniformity of Performance

Every fire department I’ve ever seen has a uniform.  With that uniform come rules and standards regarding its appearance and the manner in which it is worn.  Nobody hands out a uniform and says, “Here, wear this however you want.”  There is something to be said for uniformity of appearance and presenting a professional image to the public.  I care what I look like to the public.  YOU should care what you look like.  But more important than how we look, we should all care how we…

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Added by William Knight on August 22, 2014 at 3:00pm — 1 Comment

Mindset

The dictionary defines mindset as, “the ideas and attitudes with which a person approaches a situation.”  It’s an all-encompassing view that determines how we think and act.  Mindset determines tactics.  Tactics in turn determine the skills we use to accomplish the tactical goals of the operation.  Our mindset should be that of saving the lives of the citizens at EVERY SINGLE fire we fight.  That is, after all, the primary reason we are there.  Safety first is a great mindset…

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Added by William Knight on August 4, 2014 at 3:00pm — No Comments

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