My Books

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My books tell our story. Rescuing Providence covers a thirty-four hour shift on Rescue 1 in Providence,  RI. Rescue 1 Responding is the sequel to Rescuing Providence  and follows up where the first left off; twenty-four hours later, a thirty-eight hour shift. City Life is a collection of short  stories written just after they happenned. […]

9 out of 10

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“It’s no big deal,” she said, “just a little pain in the middle of my chest.” “How much pain, scale of 1-10?” “Nine.” “That can be a big deal.” “I didn’t want to bother you boys.” “Trust me, you are no bother. If you wait to call for two days again, then I’ll be bothered.” […]

Engine Co. EMS, treating impaired consciousness

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      Impaired consciousness is a legitimate medical emergency. Try not to become jaded. Cynicism breeds contempt, which leads to poor patient care. A person’s mental state may have been compromised, likely by his own hand, but beneath intoxication lies the person that will reappear when the substance that caused the impairment wears off. […]

Strategies for Helping a Suicidal Person

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Sunday, 1230 hrs, dispatched to a home on Wickenden Street for an emotional female. Arrive on scene to find female crying on front stairs. She points to a door. It leads to a basement. At the bottom of the stairs, next to the washer and dryer is a boy hanging dead from the ceiling joist. […]

Survival

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My career was nuts.   The patient is a twenty-two year old, intoxicated, emotional, possibly suicidal male. He’s six feet tall, weighs 250. He’s been drinking and fighting for two days. His clothes are torn, he smells like a cow and is soaked with sweat. His eyes are going in different directions. His mother states […]

The Old Man

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Alone with his thoughts most of the time, he sits in his room and doesn’t make much of a fuss. The staff lets him be, figures he is content. There are plenty of other patients to care for in the nursing home, ladies mostly, older men are the minority. He gets visitors, not often, but […]

Coping with sudden death

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I work on an ambulance where lives are lost every day. Some die peacefully, some from purposeful acts of violence and some from simple bad luck. Here are a few things I’ve learned by being present at the end. 1. The shock from the finality of sudden death is overwhelming, but those feelings are not […]

Epiphany

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Wow, I have got to be the biggest dope ever born. Ever since the presidential primaries I’ve engaged people I do not know, barely know and know quite well in what I believed to be constructive debate concerning the future of our country. The conversation disintegrates every time. I thought it was the other people’s […]

Thrillseekers

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Active shooter Heroin overdose Armed firefighters Mass Casulty SWAT Medics These topics dominate EMS discussion on social media and EMS publications. Everybody wants to be something they ain’t. EMS is 99.9% taking care of sick, nice people. If you are looking for danger and excitement look somewere else, it is seldom here. The crashes and […]

From the Captain’s seat to the stretcher; it’s not that far

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“Rescue 5 and Engine 3, respond to Dorrance at Westminster for an MVC, public bus involved.” “Rescue 5, responding.” Great. A mass-casualty incident to end the shift. How do I know a mass-casualty waits? Just you wait and see. In the 24 hours I’ve been in charge of an advanced life support vehicle in the […]

Addicts are people, and a good one got away

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The last guy to cut my hair is dead. He died in his sleep, a peaceful death no doubt, floating away on a narcotic high, no regrets, no fear, just oblivion. Kind of like how he lived; on an opiate high, no regrets, no fear, and simply oblivious that at thirty-two there’s a lot more […]

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