Saturday, January 26, 2013

OS91 attends Fire Rescue East

Firefighter at Fire Rescue East 2013
OS91 was honored to be a vendor at Fire RESCUE EAST (FRE) 2013 at the Daytona Beach Convention Center, Daytona Beach, FL from Thursday, January 24th to Saturday, January 26th, 2013. This special time with Fire Chiefs and Firefighters from the Southeast U.S. was special from start to finish! This was our third year in a row attending FRE, and it is now a time not only to meet new Responders but also a time of reunion with Responders and their Chaplains who have previously connected with us for Psalm 91 cards and books.

Psalm 91 Teacher
I had many joys at FRE this year: one outstanding encounter was with this Firefighter, Bob, who was so eager to reconnect with Operation Safety 91, that he specially looked for us in the roster. After receiving Peggy Joyce Ruth's book, Psalm 91, God's Shield of Protection last year, he read it three times and even taught a class on it! This book had a profound effect on him and he couldn't wait to share that with me!

Clermont, FL Tower Truck on display at FRE
Of course in our blog we get to show off our special friends: Clermont Fire Departments' Tower Truck was on display at the Convention. Clermont Fire Chief Carle Bishop came to the OS91 booth to say hi and to make sure we knew that he and some of Clermont Firefighters are coming to the 5th Annual Tribute.

RIT Team Simulated Rescue Competition
For me, the most impactful experience of FRE was the Rapid Intervention Team (RIT) simulated rescues. A maze was under construction when we arrived on Thursday, ready for several RIT Teams on Friday and a final competition of Saturday. I posted many pics on our Facebook page as these rescues were going on. These brave Responders don their protective uniforms, gear and oxygen. Their masks are fixed to duplicate the conditions of a smoke filled room, so they basically can not see. Going into the maze, Team 1 (2 Firefighters) secures a rope at the entrance and crawls through the maze until they locate the victim, then hook him/her up to oxygen. Meanwhile Team 2 follows the rope until they meet Team 1 with the victim. Together Team 1 pulls as Team 2 pushes the body back through the maze to safety. All this, with a limited amount of oxygen! To see more photos, go to

OS91 friend Seminole Chief Leeanna Mims 
and new Orange County Fire Chief Otto Drozd III
It was such a joy to see our friend, Chief Leeanna Mims, and to be introduced for the first time to Orange County's new Fire Chief, Otto Drozd.

L to R: Chiefs John Williamson, Jan Otero with Ed
And how we love our very own Winter Garden Fire Chief John Williamson, who is such a blessing to Operation Safety 91. Chief Williamson is now the past President of the Florida Fire Chiefs Association which holds Fire Rescue East annually. The OS91 so enjoyed meeting for the first time our new Minneola Fire Chief Jan Otero, a 27 year old Fire Chief who took over after our friend Chief Derryl O'Neal went to Madeira Beach as Fire Chief.

Chief Derryl O'Neal with Ed

 Mascotte Fire Chief  Randy Brasher with Ed and Mary

Young lady Firefighters
It is on my heart to salute women Firefighters. Your heart for people is well as your bravery and strength! This Firefighter on the right visited our booth last year! 

OS91 partner, Chaplain Joe LaCognata with Mary
What a joyful reunion with a Responder Chaplain we met at a previous FRE Convention, Joe LaCognata. I spent some time listening as he told me how much he has appreciated the Psalm 91 cards and books! Joe, President and Founder of Fire Rescue Support, Inc., has such a heart for Firefighters.  Check out his website: 

Fellowship of Christian Firefighters International
L to R: Ed, Mary, Trevor Nelson, Tommy Neiman, Craig Duck, Ronnie Rivera, Percy Golden
And then, some of our favorite people in the world: The Fellowship of Christian Firefighters International with their new President, Craig Duck. You are all very special to OS91!

Firefighter T-shirt
This saying on the front of one of the Firefighter's T-shirts sums up the attitude of these wonderful, brave Responders: "Keep Training in your Life"! OS91 salutes Firefighters and all Responders. God has put a very special gift in you all: a gift that reflects His own Divine rescue of the fallen human race. Thank you for your service! We appreciate you and pray for you daily!

1 comment:

  1. It was awesome to see you both again. Even though we are a few miles further apart, you are still in my thoughts and prayers. I have your card in my pocket and your cross on my backpack :) May God bless you for the work that you are doing and may he keep you safe until we meet again. Derryl