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"May we think of freedom not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right."
– Peter Marshall  
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  Volume No. 18 Issue No. 7 July 2021  

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  Shield 616 donates protective gear to FFPD
  By Pete Gawda

   In this day of snipers and mass shootings, Falcon Fire Protection District firefighters are now better prepared to face such situations, thanks to a recent donation of equipment.
   
   On May 6, the FFPD received a donation of 24 sets of body armor, valued at $52,800, from the nonprofit organization, Shield 616. Ashley Felice, project manager for Shield 616, said the donation was possible because of the generosity of local donors and the Katalytic Foundation. The local donors were Amplify Events Inc.; Chris Lujan; Dale McGehee; National Christian Foundation-GA; Luis Perez; Wells Family Dog Boarding and Training; and Falcon Peyton Homes.
   
   Most of the body armor went to Station 1 because of their high call volume, said Jeff Petersma, FFPD deputy chief. He said the body armor would be used whenever firefighters thought it was necessary. In addition to shooting situations, Petersma said the body armor could be used in cases of domestic violence, assault, drug overdose and suicide attempts.
   
   Jake Shifstad, retired Colorado Springs police officer, founded Shield 616, Felice said. As a police officer, he was involved in two active shooter incidents. After the second incident, Felice said Shifstad realized that the shooter was using a rifle — and he had no protection against rifle fire. So, he started a nonprofit organization to provide protective equipment for first responders. Shield 616 is based in Colorado Springs but is active in 27 different states.
   
   Felice said in addition to providing protective gear for first responders, Shield 616 tries to bridge the gap between the community and first responders by soliciting donations from local communities and then bringing the donors to the presentation of the equipment. The organization takes its name from Ephesians 6:16: King James Version: “Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench the fiery darts of the wicked.”
  
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  Falcon paramedics honored at FFPD meeting
  By Pete Gawda

   At the May 19 meeting, the Falcon Fire Protection District Board of Directors recognized the lifesaving efforts of paramedics and discussed construction projects.
   
   EMS recognition
   Jon Webb, Emergency Medical Services division chief, said he was catching up after the pandemic to recognize firefighters for their lifesaving efforts last year. For their response to two cardiac arrest calls in January 2020, Webb presented Brandon McKenna, Joshua Adkins, Curtis Kauffman, Cody Richens, Corey Kurt and Timothy Wilkerson with the Phoenix Award. This is an award Webb presents to paramedics who have been instrumental in saving a life. Webb said there would be other awards presented in the coming meetings to recognize other lifesaving actions during the pandemic. Webb said family members and friends who administer CPR before paramedics arrive on the scene helps a great deal.
   
   Reports
   FFPD is in good shape financially. In all areas, the budget revenues exceeded expenditures. The call volume for April was the second highest of the year with 13 to 19 calls a day. April was also a busy month for the EMS division, with 125 calls. Webb said paramedics would continue to wear masks until there was a big decline in cases of COVID 19.
   
   Between Jan. 1 and the end of April, the department responded to 1,139 calls. There were 26 reserve hours last month.
   
   Construction updates
   Chief Trent Harwig said that construction crews were taking advantage of the good weather to pour concrete for construction of the new Station 3 He added that inside work is getting done, such as electrical wiring, plumbing and HVAC. He said the builders were close to having the walls done. Station 3 was modeled after Station 4. Harwig said that so far costs were 3-to-4% of the cost of Station 4. In connection with the construction of Station 3, the board approved a draw by Hammers Construction for $304,755 for work completed, and approved change orders.
   
   The board learned that YOW Architects is preparing bid requests for the new administration building. The board discussed advertising for bids in mid-June, receiving those bids in late July and awarding a contract in August. The board also discussed using a temporary building for administration while the new administration building is being built. They discussed the advantages of using a temporary building on site as opposed to renting office space elsewhere.
   
   Other matters
   There was some discussion about transferring the utility easement on district property at Station 1 to Woodmen Hills Metropolitan District in connection with construction of a park on the property.
   
   The board approved H&H Law as special counsel on an as-needed basis for employment law and potential litigation matters. The board discussed, but took no action, on a request by Fidelity Towers to build a cellular tower on Station 2 property. The chief said he would have more information and a recommendation for the next meeting.
   
   The next board meeting is Wednesday, June 16, at 4 p.m. at Station 3 on Old Meridian Road. To participate via conference call, dial 719-495-2681 and follow the prompts.
  
FFPD Award: At the May 19 meeting of the Falcon Fire Protection District Board of Directors, Jon Webb, EMS division chief, presented the Phoenix Award to (left to right) Brandon McKenna, Joshua Adkins, Curtis Kauffman, Cody Richens, Corey Kurt, Webb, and Timothy Wilkerson. Photo by Pete Gawda
 
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  Safety tip - Firefighter has a passion for community
  By Pete Gawda

   The June fire safety tip comes from firefighter/paramedic Cody Andersen. He spent eight years with Black Forest Fire Rescue before spending the last 18 months with Falcon Fire Protection District.
   
   Andersen moved over to the FFPD because he grew up in Falcon, and he said there were more opportunities for advancement. He said he became a firefighter because of a passion for serving his community. Being a firefighter is a rewarding and enjoyable way of giving back to the community, Andersen said. And that sense of helping the community is what he likes most about firefighting. Plus, he said he gets to hang out with his friends while he is on duty.
   
   June Fire Safety Tip: Cody Andersen advises homeowners to keep fire extinguishers easily accessible in the two places in the home where fires are most likely, the kitchen and the garage. If possible, Andersen advises having a third fire extinguisher near the laundry room. Homeowners should make sure the fire extinguishers are fully charged and family members know how to use them.
   
   Stay connected with the Falcon Fire Protection District
   Website: http://www.falconfirepd.org
   Facebook: Falcon Fire Department
   Twitter: @FalconFireDept
   NextDoor.com
  
Cody Andersen came over to the FFPD from Black Forest Fire Rescue. Photo by Pete Gawda
 
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