Where did you serve and what did you do?
VMA 214 Blacksheep(USMC) AV8B engine mechanic. OEFII 2009
How are you #StillServing?
I am currently a firefighter/EMT for Jasper County Fire Rescue. I am attending paramedic school at this time and should complete that course in August of 2022. I also volunteer as a veterans mentor for the Marine Corps league to talk with struggling veterans and provide resources for suicide prevention and other VA benefits.
Why do you do it?
We were all put on this earth for a purpose. After struggling myself for about 6 years after separating from the Marine Corps, battling drug and alcohol addiction, suicidal thoughts and mental health issues, I hit rock bottom and found myself homeless having lost everything and my wife filing for divorce. At the time I was a CDL truck driver, in November of 2020 I flipped my 18 wheeler and was nearly killed. That crash was my wake up call. Having been raised in a firehouse and being around the fire service most of my life I had always felt that being a firefighter was where I was supposed to be but was never able to get offered an opportunity with a paid department that would put me through the recruit school. In January of 2021 Jasper County Fire Rescue offered me a job that was contingent on my successful completion of the recruit school and an advanced pace 5 week EMT course. By July of 2021 I was a fully certified firefighter, had graduated from the SC State fire academy, obtained a National Registry EMT certification, and had finally accomplished my first goals in the fire service. A couple months after finishing EMT school my training chief approached me and asked me, since I scored so highly on the NREMT test, if I would be interested in attending the upcoming paramedic course. Eventually I agreed. Fast forward to today, now having a few months on the job, working every shift on an ambulance, I finally found my why. The chances I’m given every shift I work to make a difference in someone’s life are plentiful. Whether it’s through emergency medical treatment in the field, or a call that you can treat someone with simple acts of love, there are so many opportunities to make a difference. So, my why is because I’ve been at rock bottom, I’ve lost everything, I’ve experience more bad days than I’d like to admit, so every chance I get to bring positivity to someone’s life on what may be their worst day, that’s WHY I do it. I was put on this earth to make a difference in people’s lives by using my personal experiences to bring hope and love to the lives of those that call upon us in their moment of need.