Michael McCartney

Seven new lieutenants were promoted earlier this year. We introduce them to you all week long on the MFD blog.

What is your new station and shift? 
I’m at Station 9 (Midvale Blvd.) on the “A” shift.

What was your previous position and station assignment? 
I started at Station 3 and spent six years there, then I worked at Station 1 for the last eight years. I joined the MFD in October 2001.

What do you like about your new station and territory? 
This is a very different territory from those I've worked at in the past. It has a wide variety, from university buildings to the elderly to Shorewood. It's pretty large and spread out, so there's a lot of area to cover.

The people seem to be very helpful here. People bring us bread, they stop by the firehouse. The neighborhood's very welcoming. 

Fire-wise, there's such a variety in construction types that it’s taking some time to learn the different buildings and all the challenges they might present. I’m enjoying the diversity among the people and places. 
Shortly after you became a lieutenant, your crew was first on scene at the Glass Nickel Pizza and Blackhawk Dr. fires. What was that like?
Well, it was a good way to learn quickly. It was exciting and nerve-racking, but I think the crew worked well together, and on top of that we worked well with the other crews. 

Experiences like that give you a whole lot of respect for the officers before you and what they went through, once you're in their shoes. Experience is the best way to learn on this job. It helps you build your knowledge base— and hopefully your comfort level.

What were you doing before you joined the MFD?
I taught science at a middle school for seven years before coming to the MFD, and I’ve been a wrestling coach in Westfield for twenty years. 
I had some friends on the job at MFD, and I knew I wanted to make a career switch. This showed me a whole new career that I love!

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Category: General, Station 9