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IAFF 10th District Vice President Frank Lima swears in 2 of L2400’s newest Officers in at our Executive Board Meeting. ... See MoreSee Less

IAFF 10th District Vice President Frank Lima swears in 2 of L2400’s newest Officers in at our Executive Board Meeting.


Comment on Facebook

Well deserved, congratulations

Congratulations 🎉


3 weeks ago

San Mateo County Firefighters, IAFF L2400

When is a firefighter no longer a firefighter?I put my stuff in a box, taped it up, labeled it, put it on a shelf, found a dusty old chair in the corner of my basement, sat a spell, had a moment, got up, laughed at myself and moved on.

By Michael Morse


Is it the day he puts in his papers?

The last night in the station?

Driving away from the station after the final shift?

When he says, “I’m home,” and stays there?

Or is it when the fire in his heart diminishes and the thrill of responding to emergencies in the dead of winter is no longer there, but he does his job and leads by example and never lets “the kids” know that he knows the end is near?

Is it when the thought of working a holiday is no longer acceptable, and unused sick or vacation time begins getting used?

Or when “the tones” at 3:00 a.m. sound like the bells of hell rather than a subtle way to say get up, get dressed, and get on the truck?

Is a firefighter through when he makes rank?

Or if he chooses a different career path, like EMS or Fire Prevention?

Or arson investigator?

Is a firefighter no longer a firefighter when the years of injury finally make it impossible for him to do his job without putting himself, his crew, and the people he is sworn to protect in danger?

Does he become less of a firefighter if he retires on a disability?

It’s none of those things. A firefighter is no longer a firefighter when he stops breathing. Then he is a dead firefighter. Three days later, he will be a dead and buried firefighter. Then, he will live forever with the rest of the firefighters who came before him and lived the life and loved the job even when it became more and more difficult to feel it the way they once did.

A firefighter is no longer a firefighter only when he chooses to no longer be a firefighter. Nobody can make that choice but the firefighter. What makes a firefighter a firefighter resides deep inside, and nobody can change that unless the firefighter chooses it. Simply hanging up the turnout gear for the last time does not strip a firefighter of his status.

Nobody can take away the things that make us firefighters. Nobody can strip us of our memories, our heart and soul, or our willingness to put it all on the line when needed. Nobody can take the friends we make during our journey away. Nobody can make us forget those friends we have lost.

Being a firefighter is for life. There is no such thing as a retired firefighter. We can’t even die without being remembered as a firefighter. And after living the life, and feeling the heat, and knowing exactly how good it feels to do the job, who would want to?

Originally published in Fire Engineering

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When is a firefighter no longer a firefighter?


Comment on Facebook

My Dad was a firefighter til the day he died. RIP dad When I am called to duty, God, wherever flames may rage, give me strength to save a life, whatever be its age. Help me embrace a little child before it is too late, or save an older person from the horror of that fate. Enable me to be alert, and hear the weakest shout, quickly and efficiently to put the fire out. I want to fill my calling, to give the best in me, to guard my friend and neighbor, and protect his property. And if according to Your will I must answer death’s call, bless with Your protecting hand, my family one and all. Amen.

They are always a firefighter, I say the same thing to my nursing coworkers....we will always be a nurse ❤️

Always a Firefighter, or a Retired Firefighter.

They can join the First Responders Lions Club to continue to serve. Ask me.

Same with police.

After 30 years. 5years retired , after two knee replacements and a shoulder replacement the job never leaves my mind.

My all time heroes❣️

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4 weeks ago

San Mateo County Firefighters, IAFF L2400

“I cried when I found your daughter lying in a ditch, high on meth - But you didn't know

I was devastated when I found the 32 year old veteran dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound - But you didn't know

I missed my kids birthdays, school plays and family trips because I had to work - But you didn't know

I had nightmares about the 2 year old I found crushed under a truck tire while mom was inside buying dope - But you didn't know

I really struggled with EVERY death notification I made to a family about their loved one - But you didn't know

I was never comfortable at social gatherings because with the things I've seen, I can't trust anyone - But you didn't know

I've seen things you could never even imagine - But you didn't know

My job was hard on my family - But you didn't know

I had problems, just like everyone else - But you didn't know

The next time you see any first responder, remember that they are people first and there is no training in the world that prepares them for the things they see and do on a daily basis.”
Post by Ohio Cops Facebook page
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Comment on Facebook

I have the upmost respect for all first responders for the difficult work they do and the terrible things they must see. God bless them all and keep them safe.

God Bless you all and keep you safe. Whenever I see a fire truck, I say a prayer that angels go with you. You have a hard job-we rely on you-and we thank you xxx

I love you all. Thank you for tour service. Of course we all love firefighters. But what happened to our respect for police officers. They bring us a huge service and I appreciate them.

God bless and watch over all first responders everywhere. Thank you for all you do. ❤️❤️

Thank you😔❤️🎈

We honor and appreciate you all, thank you.

I am so grateful for each and every one of you! Stay safe. ❤️

They are all special.

Thank you all for protecting all of us. I appreciate all that you do! Always!

Amen! Any time I see a responder, I thank them for their service and as I am saying it I pat my heart 3 times with my right hand....

So true❤️ Thank you for all you do💗

Very true

Me too!


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The IAFF Center of Excellence for Behavioral Health Treatment and Recovery is a one-of-a-kind addiction treatment facility specializing in PTSD for IAFF members – and IAFF members only – who are struggling with addiction, PTSD other related behavioral health challenges to receive the help they need in taking the first steps toward recovery. It is a safe haven for members to talk with other members who have faced or overcome similar challenges.


We Do More Than Save Lives!

San Mateo County Firefighters would like to thank everyone who has supported our donation drives throughout the years. With the generosity of our friends, we have been able to provide the community throughout San Mateo County with programs designed to educate the public about the many aspects of fire prevention and safety. Through our non-profit (501c3) charity, The San Mateo County Firefighters Foundation, San Mateo County Fighters continue to support local area programs and services.