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Giving is Life

The gift of time is precious. A mother gives all of herself for her children. Any parent would give anything for their children. The time given is multiplied when the children grow up and join the parents in their gift . Giving to family is magnificent and it pays dividends for the family. Giving to the community exponentially multiplies the gift.
I had the opportunity to see my fire service volunteers give up their Friday night. I saw our Vienna Civic Club members give a Saturday away for either some child’s School scholarship or help someone in the community benevolence.I saw two churches celebrating a simple meal to give money to worldly causes. I saw a pastor and congregation Honor the members of their Local and Surrounding Fire Departments for the gift of time.
I personally participated in a Meth lab standby that was secret on purpose! My members when called dropped Friday night plans and spent 6 hours in a very quiet boring standby for our Sheriffs department. I was so proud of all our Staff and Volunteers. No complaints and all routines disrupted even knowing we would spend 8 more hours together Sunday.
I was going to help put our mobile kitchen together with Bill Swart. I was tied up and missing Victoria’s birthday party. Missing the party and Roberta’s enchiladas and the equipment loading. But guess what? My son’s and Bill’s sons stepped up and got the trailer loaded.
The next morning Roberta and I started Early to help with a Fundraiser for the Vienna Civic Club. We provided food for the Lewisville Arts Festival. The Swart family was all in with parents and children helping out and giving the Gift of time.Many of the membership participated and we stayed and sold breakfast and lunch until 3pm. We got home and unloaded and got chilled out by about 5pm.
Jim had helped all day and Victoria had taken her Saturday to do all the hair for a Wedding. Her day continued at Fairview Moravian with a fundraiser dinner for the earthquake victims in Nepal. Roberta and I met Jim at Fairview. We had a magnificent soup and salad dinner and marvelous entertainment for a modest donation of money to the Relief effort.
Sunday was able to sleep a little late but dress for the FireFighter Appreciation Sunday at Olivet Moravian at 10:30.
We had 3 rows of Firefighters and a whole page of Olivet’s members that had helped in Vienna or Mount Tabor, Winston-Salem or Forsyth County FD. The liturgy was very appropriate and we left the Church renewed for the service given. No time to rest. We had Open House at Vienna FD till 5pm. I had 2 Cadets showing the apparatus and station. The Vienna Auxillary rolled in and got a food table setup. The Fire Prevention stuff was timeless and distributed.
Roberta was not done! We had the roadside to cleanup so I went out and we double teamed the Yadkinville stretch from WCCC to Vienna Village. The weekend will be complete and we will still be going. Monday night is Training night for our members that may have already given 16-24 hours since Friday. To ease the pain we are having Appreciation night meal by our corporation. More work for some and all will pitch in to help.
My point is not only have my parents given me the gift of time, but I have paid it forward a generation. I got to see Sons and grandsons helping in the Church, Civic Club, and Fire Department. We have a Grandson member Scott continuing the legacy of JD Beroth. Grandson of Vernice Beroth is Alex and Grandson of Lynn Harward is Justin. Jim and Paul are the No1 and No2 adopted grandsons of Marvin Wilson. The Legacy continues. Time marches on!

“It’s being here now that’s important. There’s no past and there’s no future. Time is a very misleading thing. All there is ever, is the now. We can gain experience from the past, but we can’t relive it; and we can hope for the future, but we don’t know if there is one.”
― George Harrison

“Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.”
― Henry van Dyke

“Time is Gift- Enjoy each second.”
Tim Lasley


Like Night and Day

I have worked with rookies and semi-trained firefighters for the last 30 years. I have also had the opportunity to work with the best. They are motivated and highly trained with advanced experience on multiple emergency incidents. Hard working and usually low in complaints. I am proud to call many of these magnificent FF friends.
Training for #ViennaFD is Monday nights and ongoing. We take one subject a month and work from basic to advanced. Using the Training capabilities of our Internet and written textbooks we make sure to add practical training for muscle memory.Quarterly we add mutual aid training to the mix. Water supply and Fire Attack are the crowd favorites. Advanced extrication and Search/Water safety are excellent too.
Tonight Vienna,and Old Richmond, and Forsyth County came together to practice our hose lays and fire attack, and Search techniques. I had 109 as torch and Mike checking on proper evolutions and 2 old Chiefs playing in the burn rooms working as Safety. 3 thermal imagers were at work by the crews. Search had one , Fire Attack had one and Old Guy 1 &2 had one. Crews alternated between search and Fire Attack. Dummy was rescued early and often.
The opportunity to plant seeds and modify actual behavior is important. Getting familiar with our equipment is always great. Learning some new techniques from a neighbor is great too. Just seeing how smooth crews work together is good for other crews. Training to get it right is a goal. Training so we don’t get it wrong is our Con-Ed…
Thanks to Mike D. Jamie F. Casey W and Brock. Great job tonight. As always we would never get to do any of this without our FTCC Northwest campus and Dereck.

Pleasant Surprise

ASTE/ IGO Convention was a pleasant surprise this year for a number of reasons. We had some trouble attracting vendors initially. I personally spoke to a couple that thought they had seen all of the regulars and did not get a lead last year.By convention time the spaces were full and attendees had filled our block of rooms. Transition to a new President and Sale of our old building were going to happen.
Thursday was Director and Board meeting. We got the great news that we had great trainers and lots of attendees. Reports went quickly and IGO and IGO insurance were in good standing. The building was sold and closed over the weekend.
The convention started with the arrival of many attendees and a Great Hotel staff and atmosphere.
Friday morning classes were over capacity for most and well instructed and attended. Management tracks and technician tracks had great presenters and enthusiastic attendees. Craig and Deb Van Battenburg brought ACDC Hybrid technology to the weekend. Craig attended classes Friday and Taught all day Sat, Trade-show remained packed Saturday and lots of attendees made everyone happy.
We missed a few folks that had Hurricane issues. We missed those vendors that thought IGO was Dead. We all are looking forward to another magnificent year of Auto repair at Wilson’s Garage of Pfafftown. We may have added services? We will see… The Future’s so Bright We gotta wear shades!!!
P.S. Thanks JIM
And great to see Paul in Raleigh


I have written love letters and journals. I wrote a handwritten letter to my girlfriend everyday of my Senior Year at NCSU. We corresponded by mail because phone charges were too expensive. We were separated by distance only. She wrote me back and our letters crossed in the mail. I thought she would never leave her family and beloved New Mexico. I WAS WRONG. We fell in love writing to each other. I found my soulmate and we had a magnificent courtship. I asked her to marry me after I had written her parents a letter. I got permission and the Appalachian Kid brought the New Mexico girl to North Carolina. Well I am ahead of myself…
We fell in love with music and our mutual love of God and family. We hoped and prayed we would be ok for my job was low pay and long hours. She would go to school. Scratch that! Roberta was tired of school. I graduated NCSU and went straight to work for Mr. and Mrs. Wilson. I ran the garage. Roberta went back to N.M. after my graduation party of having her travel to see me!!. We thought she would go to School at State and we would continue the long distance relationship. NOT!
We married September 3 1983. We honeymooned back to NC with the Belair named Myrtle. Full of stuff and no AC. We had love and 2 coolers. We hunted a motel with 2 criteria, Pool and 2 beds…
WE would jump in the pool, cool off then find some dinner, and then swim again. This continued all across the USA.
Life was magnificent and Roberta started jumping right in to our community. Church, Civic Club, Fire Department, and Scouts kept us busy. She found work cruising timber and then worked for Beroth Oil.
When the boys started coming we made a conscious decision to keep the business small and Roberta to work at Home. This was tough until we moved in next to the garage in ’95. Roberta started keeping the books and raising boys. We were and still are into everything in our community. Roberta is a loving mother a caring EMT and Wonderful partner. Love is not defined but expressed. Roberta expresses her love of family and community by her radiant smile and enthusiastic outlook. She backs it up with a strong conviction and work ethic. She completes me!
Love you this……… Much!!!
Thanks for the best partner and lover and wife a man could have.
Love ya


Borrowing from a cool Fire Service author – My Gen 2 #2 is my youngest son Paul. Paul came into the world having a little stress. Paul is under very little stress now that he cannot handle. Paul has followed his Brother Jim and Dad into every group and network of friends and family. He leads us in thinking and acting on those thoughts.

Paul is and Eagle Scout and Vigil honor member of the Wahissa lodge 118. Paul is very nearly a FF1&2 from NCDOI. Paul elected to work on the transfer to NCSU following both Mom n Dad into Biology… Dad- Biological n Ag Engineering. Mom Ag Biology – Entomology, Paul will be studying Biology in the School of Forest Resources.

Paul is very creative and has a great talent to draw and create. He is always thinking and acting on his imagination. One example is the surfboard. Paul wanted to learn to surf and talked Jim into camping at the Beach in Winter/Early Spring and catching NC’s best waves. Paul followed the family camping and hiking and has kept walking in the woods through out his life.

Paul has made some great friends and keeps close contact with his cousins, John and Ben and Alex and Bolton . The Donald Lankford family  is a great group of friends. Our hometown friends and Vienna FD members form a special bond in Paul’s life. Lyle and Paul  and Chris have been best friends as long as I can remember. Many evenings you can find Paul and Chris and Lyle at the campfire ring in our field.

Paul helped with Chris Warner’s Vigil as well as Adam Moore’s and a few others. Jim and Paul and I  along with Mike Warner and Andrew Erickson and Steve Tucker, A few of my Best friends. We helped Honor Chris and worked extremely hard and Paul and his younger friends visited many of the candidates.

I am so proud of Paul. My NCSU son, My Firefighting Brother, Scouting Brother, Youth to my Old age and treachery.

Thanks Son. Love Ya



Jim is my son. Jim has grown up and gotten married. Jim and I have the opportunity to work together everyday. Working with family can be especially hard. With my family it has been really easy. I think my relationship with my Wife Roberta has had the greatest impact on both my sons. Jim has an easy going attitude.
Jim comes to work everyday and very seldom whines. He is most studious and very much a reader. He knows the situations as they unfold. He knows when to come get DAD. He also knows when to geterdun too.
Jim is a Firefighter with Vienna. He is always willing to help with all the special projects a Fire Chief has to accomplish. Jim understands the son of the Fire Chief is held to a higher standard. He makes the training and has built his life around Monday nights. We get to do fire training together. I love this!
Jim is an Eagle Scout, Vigil honor member of Wahissa Lodge #118, and a leader in Troop 919 . We have camped all over the United States. We have hiked together as Scouts and Family.
Jim found a girlfriend with many talents. Jim married this girlfriend because she Gets it. I really think he fell in love and God put them together. Victoria is now a part of Jim. This makes her a part of our Family.
The past few weekends Jim and I along with a great many others were honored to participate in both the Vigil weekend and Festival at Brookstown. I was so tired both weekends and if it had not been for Jim I would never be able to participate like I do. Thanks to a magnificent Son, Co-worker ,and Brother in Scouting, and Christ. Love Ya.

Weekend Warrior?

My life gets more and more complicated but easier to manage because of my Family and Friends.I have grown into the man I am, easing my way into multiple leadership positions. I have been followed and actually grown 3 community leaders. Roberta, Jim, and Paul have followed and are poised to surpass everything I am doing or accomplishing. Other very magnificent friends and their families are involved in service to organizations and communities and beyond.

I look back at my Blog after 2 amazing weekends and I write the same remarks. I am so Blessed. I have had the awesome opportunity to be heavily involved in the Scouting Vigil process with Wahissa 118. I got honored in 2008 and a Scout or Scouter from our Troop919 has been honored almost every year since. A wonderful exhausting but exhilarating weekend helping to Honor the Vigil Candidates each year. We honored Chris Warner and Adam Moore from our Troop this Year. It was a great weekend as we also honored the 16 candidates this year.
Following the Vigil the next weekend has been Brookstown UMC Community Festival. Intense amounts of planning and setting up and tearing down with sharing our Church and Faith with the community and world beyond. My church family is committed and involved. The Lasley Family is committed. The Swart Family is Committed. The Macemores are Committed. The Appersons are committed. The Mendenhalls are committed. The Powers are Committed. The Mocks are committed. Many many more are committed. Marge Lanier has family that has driven 300 miles to attend and helpout. Many Many more families are committed. Sharpes, Cofers, Webbs,Collins, Troop and Pack 919, Vienna FD members,. You get the picture. I have missed someone and do not intend to slight anyone. Magnificent efforts and yet each year we get more and more folks attend our church or come to know Jesus because of our labor of LOVE.
Family of Roberta and Jim and Paul pull off the impossible and get all ready for the 9-2pm run and then teardown like a group of ants. When we get done and the dust settles Will, Jim, Bill and Chip and Ralph are usually around. This year we wanted to water the oak tree. Ralph drove spikes into the ground and we flooded it with water. I could hear the old tree singing.
Chip Webb our Pastor spoke about Aprons and Bibs Sunday morning. We need both at times in our lives. My family and others live to serve… Weekends the time for Warriors