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Wildland fire is a hugely transformative experience on many levels; it transforms landscapes and it transforms people — without bias or discrimination. There is no doubt that many people are fascinated by fire, but wildland firefighters are a unique breed of individuals who are drawn to and understand fire on an entirely different level.
Think about what happens when you’re sitting around a campfire with friends. Stories…good storytelling is what happens. Stories that make the hair stand up on your arms; stories that make you laugh; stories that make you think and question what you believe you already know. Now, imagine those friends have personally lit thousands of acres on fire. That’s what The Smokey Generation is capturing – the stories of extraordinary people who would happily sit around a campfire with you and share their thoughts, experiences, and lessons learned. In essence, The Smokey Generation is dedicated to collecting, preserving, and sharing stories and oral histories of wildland firefighters from all walks of life. It is dedicated to telling the story of fire.
Click on the images below to view stories from each person who has contributed to The Smokey Generation. There are many more interviews in the pipeline – check back over the next couple of months for even more stories.
Have a good laugh, take a deep breath, and give some thought to the messages. You are bound to be transformed, even if only in the smallest of ways. Enjoy!
Brian Anderson, Hotshot Superintendent
Bob Beckley , Former Smokejumper (RAC ’83)
Leonard Blixrud, Former Smokejumper (MSO ’53)
Eric Brekstad, Crew Boss, Miller Timber Services
Charlie Caldwell, Retired Hotshot Superintendent
Peter Carpenter, Former Smokejumper (RDD ’59)
Juan Castandea, Hotshot Squad Leader
Dirk Charley, USFS Tribal Relations Prog. Mgr
Fred Cooper, Former Smokejumper (NCSB ’62)
Brent Corkish, Hotshot Sawyer
Jeff R. Davis, Retired Smokejumper (MSO ’57)
Drew Derrick, Hotshot Senior Firefighter
Rick Dice, Owner, PatRick Corporation
Harold Dramstad, Former Smokejumper (MYC ’87)
Troop Emonds, Former Smokejumper (CJ ’66)
Dan Farmer, Hotshot Crewmember
Rigo Flores, Hotshot Lead Firefighter
Ron Garcia, Dist. Fire Management Officer
Nick Glatt, Hotshot Lead Firefighter
Steve Griffin, N. CA Fire Training Officer
Schin Haakenson, Owner, A-Team Wildfire Contract Engines, Inc.
Don Halloran, Former Smokejumper (MSO ’53)
Adam Hernandez, Hotshot Captain
Robert Hough, Former Smokejumper (NCSB ’51)
C. Richard (Dick) Hughes, Former Smokejumper (MSO ’64)
Ken Jordan, Retired Hotshot Superintendent
Matt Kennedy, Hotshot Superintendent
Erin Kimsey, Hotshot Senior Firefighter
Stephen Latham, Current Smokejumper (MSO ’11)
Brian Laird, Hotshot Captain
Jeff Locke, Hotshot Superintendent
Ed Lynn, Smokejumper (MSO ’95)
Dan Mallia, Hotshot Superintendent
Bruce Marshall, Former Smokejumper (BOI ’71)
Kim Maynard, Former Smokejumper (MSO ’82)
Eric Miller, Hotshot Superintendent
Lee Miller, Owner, Miller Timber Services
Isaac Naylor, Battalion Chief
Gina Papke, Program Specialist & former IHC Supt.
Robert Parcell, Former Smokejumper (MSO ‘71)
Josh Parker, Hotshot Senior Firefighter
Dan Pickard, Hotshot Squad Leader
Nick Robison, Hotshot Squad Leader
Stephanie Rogers, Hotshot Crewmember
William Sanders, Hotshot Crewmember
Don Skei, Former Smokejumper (RAC ’69)
Ariel Starr, Smokejumper (RDD ’12)
Ronald Stephens, Former Smokejumper (MSO ’46)
Cameron Stinchfield, Detailed Asst. Hotshot Supt.
Bobby Sutton, Current Smokejumper (MSO ’91)
Andy Thorne, Retired Captain & Smokejumper
Tom Wilks, Former Smokejumper (GAC ’87)
Mark Youmans, Former Smokejumper (RDD ’81)
Elvira Young, Retired, USFS
The Bushmen Group, Now Entiat IHC
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