2. My academy time was from October of 1992 to December 1992 which was the month we graduated. I was so proud of my shield that i still have, and was happy to be on my way with my career as a NYC EMS EMT. I was on the job from 1992-July 2000. That was the month I got injured and went and retired later that year.
3. The most gratifying things I had ever been through was learning from the best people on the job, and gaining experience, and hearing patients say "thank you for your help" With me it was all about helping people the best way I could. And there is always satisfaction when helping children. Alot of time it wasn't easy out there but working in that station helped make it easier. My unit, 18 Henry, was close with PD as well and having them when we needed them made it good to work out there on the streets on NYC.
4. My most memorable experience was when I first got out of the academy and spent 6 weeks at then Station 22 in the Bronx and one of the first few calls I had was concerning a 15 year old girl who lived with her grandmother and their living conditions were very bad. The Lt. had me going in the house, after convincing the granddaughter to let me in, to see what the conditions were. Well needless to say I was mortified, and the grandmother was very combative towards anyone who came near her. she was laying on a filthy bed in the dark and I could hear the "scurry" of mice all around her. I came back out and the LT., the social workers, and PD were all looking at me for the signal on what to do. The granddaughter was also looking at me as if to say "please don't let them taker her" but I couldn't in all conscientiousness, let her stay in that house so I had to give them the word but with my eyes and they went in and took her out to the hospital. The struggle was on with the grandmother. She was slapping everybody. Before I could say anything to the girl, she ran all the way down the block and we never saw again. It was sad. The other memorable one while in the Bronx was one day my partner, Rosie, and I were riding in the neighborhood and she was driving and all of a sudden I just said to her "let's go down this block" and she asked me why and I said "I don't know but I have a feeling we should" so we go and there is a puppy BEAGLE tied to a lamp post and abandoned. I couldn't believe it and so I got out of the ambulance and untied him and put him in the front seat with me. She said, while laughing in disbelief, "are you crazy, we can't put an animal in here" I said to her "yeah but we can't just leave him here either" So we sat for a minute and i said to her "let's take him to the nearest precinct" So we did and i told the Captain what we found and he took his hat off like you see them do on tv and scratched his head, not knowing what to do either. I told him we had a call and had to go so he ended up keeping the dog as a station pet. We left feeling good that we saved that dog. There are so many memories of being on the job, most of them good, but the best was working with some the best Harlem medics there were, and always being treated with the utmost respect from them, and having fun along the way.
6. what I liked most about my job was how much fun it was to come to work and know that I would have my easy to work with, and trustworthy partners. We were close back then and even closer when we had our own uniform and identity because of that uniform, which was green and white. You knew coming to work was fun back then. What I liked least was when we had to change our uniforms in 1996 to the FDNY navy blue ones and wear their patch, and we lost our own uniqueness and identity. There was hostility from FDNY towards us and it was never our fault that that change occurred. It was then Mayor Giuliani who did that to us to justify keeping some the of FDNY stations open. Sometimes when they came on calls with us, they would try to tell us what to do to the point that after they got to know my face, they knew i wasn't having it and they would leave the scene, or I would make it a point to tell them they could leave. I became know to them as "Miss Personality". Too funny!!
8. A typical day would start out with coffee and a bagel, had to have that to start the day, then if we had some time we would talk in front of the station and then get our equipment, sign it out, check the bus and our bags for supplies, wash the bus if needed, gas up, then head out to our response areas. Sometimes we had just a few job and other days there may be so many that we were glad when the day was over. It was good when we had just a few jobs and be able to just sit and talk with partners and it would allow more time to get to know each other. Most of the calls were sick calls, major or minor injuries, not too many gunshots, but a few, some car accidents, cardiac arrests, things like that.
9. I, as a female, never had a problem when I worked in Harlem. My unit, 18 Henry, was very popular and busy at that time. No one disrespected me, except a jilted ex-boyfriend who's name I will not mention, but at one time was one of my partners, and so I had backup and help whenever I needed it. I think the only way that kind of job would be hard for a female would be based on the individual female, and how she carries herself. I was fortunate enough to be able to handle the job and have the backup when I needed it, as well as conduct myself like a lady, but if and when I had to get dirty to do the the, I would do it and go home and wash up and get ready for the next day. If 2 females partners are working together and need help, they would get it but if she has had a problem with other co-workers, or showed no self respect, or respect towards others, it would hard for her out there.
10. Dan Heidt was not the problem people said he was. I never had a problem with him on any calls we backed each other up on. I never had to do paperwork after working with him as I had to do with only a few others that backed me up and something had gone wrong. He never disrespected me or my partners, and the calls went smoothly. He worked hard to gain the trust and respect from his fellow EMT'S and Paramedics. He knew his work and he did it.
11. My favorite dinner is probably anything with chicken or shrimp in it, brown rice, salad, vegetables. Drinks could be a diet coke, Bacardi Lemon and coke (rum and coke), iced tea, water, cranberry or pineapple juice.
12. After I had my daughter in 1997, I realized I was burnt and feeling like I wanted to stop doing this kind of work and stay home with her, but I had to work 2 1/2 more years before that day that I prayed for came along and pout me out, which was in July 2000. A very heavy patient fell back on me as she stepped up in the ambulance and I was behind her so her butt fell on my chest and it hyper-extended my back. That call came a month after I had a difficult call that made me realize "I really have to get off this job" And so with pain in my back, i put a thumbs up to GOD and said, "thank you" been gone ever since. It will 12 years next month.