Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. takes on the heat

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Garrison Command Sgt. Maj. takes on the heat

by: Pfc. Chin, Hyun-joon | .
The Morning Calm | .
published: April 20, 2013

DAEGU GARRISON — U.S. Army Garrison Daegu Command Sgt. Maj. Michael E. Diggs found himself right in the heat of things as he donned fireman’s attire to participate in fire safety training with the USAG Daegu Fire Department March 28, at the Burn House training facility on Camp Carroll. In advance of the training, however, the CSM visited the Camp Walker Fire Department for some very detailed, hands-on training conducted by the firefighters. From how to properly wear a fireman’s suit, to learning the purpose of each piece of gear, and how to control breathing, Diggs was exposed to training that highlighted safety and life-saving techniques.

“Only when you experience firsthand what the firefighters do, can you better understand or recognize the role they play in your organization,” he said. With that mindset, he made the decision to participate in the burn house training exercise --just like other firefighters undergo. Dressed in full firefighters attire, and wearing a black helmet that identified him as a trainee, the Garrison CSM joined the firefighter ranks and made his way inside the blazing burn house structure. The burn house is just one of the numerous proficiency training requirements that make up the USAG Daegu firefighter’s training demands. It is because of the demands placed on the trained and experienced firefighters, that the decision by CSM Diggs to participate in the training made the event so special.

“After exiting the burn house, I was completely exhausted. It took more out of me than I had expected due to the intense heat and the physical part that involved helping to extract the training dummy that was used,” explained the CSM. The firefighters reminded the CSM that he was experiencing almost the same thing that normal firemen go through. As the CSM discovered for himself, a firefighter’s job is really hard work.

“Once inside the burn house, the smoke and the heat was so intense. I could not see anything around me,” he said.

It was at that point that the firefighters, with safety in mind, quickly removed the Garrison CSM from the burning building.

“I think this was a great beginner exercise to familiarize myself on a small scale, on what these men train to do on a daily basis,” Diggs said. “I know I couldn’t have kept up with them in a real life situation inside of a building with many floors.

“These firefighters have a tremendous responsibility. They give so much of themselves to keep our Soldiers and family members safe. After being with them and seeing up close and firsthand, what they do, I am humbled. I have complete trust and confidence in the firefighters of USAG Daegu and Area IV,” the CSM concluded.

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