Ep 164 features the co-founder of The Healthy Dispatcher, Adam Timm. In this episode Adam gives an overview of his history from 9-1-1 dispatcher to health and mental wellness advocate. He talks about the first ever 9-1-1 Training Summit held in Charlotte, North Carolina in partnership with the Denise Amber Lee Foundation. We also talk about resolutions for the new year and what we can do to avoid stress in the workplace.
This is a must listen! As always if you have any comments, questions or you would like to be a guest on the show send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Episode topics –
- The Healthy Dispatcher overview
- 9-1-1 Training Summit
- Avoiding stress in the workplace for the new year
- And more
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By Ricardo — 8 years ago
For this entry I would like to talk about a call I took that rocked me to my core. When I think back it still gives me goosebumps. This situation was enough for me to write a memoir on it for a class I had several months ago. The memoir was suppose to be about something that occurred in my life that made me change something. I wrote about growing up with my siblings and thinking that nothing could ever break us apart. My brother and I were close but I somewhat took him for granted because I felt he would always be there. It took one extreme moment to finally make me realize that at any moment a loved one can be stripped away from you. Cherish the time that you have because you never know when it will end. The following is an excerpt from my memoir and I cut it as short as possible because it is six pages long. The names in the memoir other than my own and my brother are made up as well as the address. No identities are revealed here what so ever.
“9-1-1 where’s your emergency?”
This is something I asked every day and you always know when you are going to have a bad call. I say this because as soon as you pick up the phone you hear the screams. They are the screams of a horror movie except this horror is real. This call was no different and I immediately heard what I thought were two women screaming.
“Ma’am? Hello? Ma’am can you hear me?”
The screaming continued, the camel hair on the back of my neck stood at attention. My co-worker to the right looked toward me and I shook my head not knowing what was going on.
“Ma’am can you hear me?”
When a caller is screaming hysterically, secondary voices are just background. It takes a little longer to get through but you do the best you can. The screams of heartache and tragedy continued. I brought my voice down to a whisper to almost trick the caller into thinking there was no one there.
“Ma’am can you hear me?”
“Hello?! Is someone there?”
“Yes”, I answered with authority. “What’s your address?”
She stumbled over her words as the person in the background continued to scream. I could hear stuff being thrown around and I thought it was a domestic call.
“4357 Madison Dr.”, she blurted, trying to hold back from a melt down.
She continued with her name and phone number and the screams were growing. Something else had happened here but the caller was hard to understand. The police were already on their way and I was first in line to figure out what happened.
“Ma’am? I need to know what is going on.”
“I can’t believe he did it,” yelled a person in the background.
The screams turned into rage and the voice in the background sounded more and more like a male.
“Julie what’s going on? Who else is there?”
“It’s just me and my fiancé.”
“Who was screaming in the background? I thought there was another girl there with you?”
“No, that was him.”
“Why were you screaming? The police are on their way but you need to tell me what is going on.”
“Well my fiancé John, his brother Mike, and I were at the bar. Mike just got out of a relationship and he’s been depressed for the past week now. He kept telling us that he…that he…”
“That he was going to do what Julie?”
“That he was going to kill himself and we brushed it off.”
I frantically typed as she spoke and officers were almost there. One of my co-workers had already sent EMS to stage in the area until we knew for sure what was going on. My body was hot and sweat began to build between my ear and the phone.
“Then what happened?”
“We…we got home and he started saying it again. John went and got a shotgun, and told him that if he was going to do it to go ahead. He didn’t think he was going to do it but he shot himself in the head.”
I gasped and held my breath for a moment. I fell into their shoes and the thought of losing my younger brother swarmed my senses. Thinking that he would always be there was just me lying to myself. Tragedy could strike at any moment and I was currently listening to a grown man scream for his brother.
“Where is John now? Where’s the gun?”
“I don’t know? I think he went…Oh my god!”
“What’s going on Julie?!”
“John’s got the gun, he’s got it!”
For a moment I thought I would hear a gunshot. He yelled and screamed that it was his fault and that he did not think his brother would do it. I could feel his pain and I thought of my brother.
“Go to a different room Julie! Get away from him!”
“He just put it back down and went back outside…I’ll put it away.”
The police arrived and Julie broke down. The adrenaline was slipping away and she was no longer the strong one. She broke just as John did and I felt their pain within me. The call lasted less than six minutes but when taking a phone call like this, it’s a lifetime.
Afterward, I only thought of my brother. I thought about how I treated him and how I thought he would always be there. Nothing could tear us apart but after taking this call I realized that it could easily end before either of us knew it. When my shift ended I called my brother. It was very early in the morning but I had to speak to him.
“Rich? What’s wrong man?”
“I love you dude.”
“What? I love you too.”
“No man, I’m serious.”
I told him about my call. I told him that it killed me inside to think that I could lose him as fast as the people that dealt with their own loss. It finally made sense to me and it took a tragedy for me to come to this conclusion. It’s funny how it takes something extreme for one to realize the truth but maybe that is what we need; a swift kick in the ass to jump start the senses and the mind. After I told my brother about the call he understood why I needed to speak to him so bad. He replied with,
“I love you man.”Post Views: 964
By Ricardo — 3 years ago
Recording live from the 2016 Indiana NENA/APCO Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana it’s episode 104 of Within the Trenches, sponsored by Indiana NENA and INdigital – A leader in Next-Gen Core Services. In this episode, show regular, Rob “Big Mac” McMullen joined me to talk about anything and everything we could think of. I can’t even begin to mention what all we talked about but shout outs go to Leah of Grand Traverse, Smart911, the graphic design talents of Rizzo and the 911 Wellness Foundation.
This is a must listen so check it out, share and share again. As always if you have any questions or would like to be a guest on the show send an email to email@example.com.
Episode topics –
Post Views: 413
- Rob is a celebrity
- Rob loves the media
- New Hampshire or bust
- And more…
By Ricardo — 3 years agoThe following is in direct response to the Facebook comments of the policeone.com article “Should dispatchers be officially classified as first responders?” written by Melissa Mann. The article itself is great but there are some people who think we should not be reclassified or that we are not “in the shit” like the public safety personnel who are on scene.“I am NOT a first responder”Written by: Daphanie Bailes – Within the Trenches Admin, In Between the Chaos columnist for IAED & Senior Telecommunicator and Communications Training Coordinator for Martin County Fire RescueI’m not a first responder, that’s what lots of people say. How can you be a first responder, you just sit in a room. I would like to invite those who feel that way, to step into my world. The world of the faceless, the nameless. The world where I am only known by the sound of my voice. A voice that can portray everything from love to loathing. A voice that can give me away if I dwell on the fight at home, the fourth nastygram email of the day, the last bad 911 call or anything else that can affect my emotions. A world where I juggle the feelings associated with multiple calls, all at once. A world where I very rarely hear “Thank you” or “I want to do that when I grow up”. My world encompasses so much more than those four walls or my own voice. It is the voice of every caller or administrator on the phone, every firefighter and paramedic or EMT on the radio. It also includes the voices that don’t go away when I hang up the phone or walk out the door or try to close my eyes.I know I wasn’t the first person to put my boots on the ground but my voice was the first you heard. I broke thru language barriers to keep you safe. I instructed your loved one to give you lifesaving breaths until help could arrive. I told you to hide and kept you calm while evil walked past your closet door. I heard your wife’s screams when she realized you were beyond help. I talked to you and distracted you long enough for help to get there and take the gun from your hand. I used every resource available so we could find you when you rolled your car off the highway. I was with you when you took your last breaths. I felt your frustration and fear when the water was just too rough for you to help her. I reassured you when you begged for the minutes to disappear and for the ambulance to arrive. I shouldered your obscenities and continued to be your calm when you found your overdosed son. I prayed that you were at peace after you finally stopped the voices in your head. I told you to sing to your sweetheart, to calm him, to drown out the rest of the noise while we waited for EMS and Fire to find your mangled truck. I was the first to hear your tiny but strong cries after you made your grand entrance into this world and silently cried tears of joy with your family.I prayed when I heard your ‘Mayday’ call. I prayed because you are my brother or sister and when you hurt, I hurt. I train and learn every day, beyond what is required, because I am the one and only person who is not allowed to be caught off guard and not know what to do. So many lives desperately depend on me to know what to do or who to call and to make it happen in the blink of an eye.In a way, those people are correct. I’m not a first responder by the purest definition. I am a highly trained Public Safety Telecommunicator. I am THE FIRST RESPONDER. I am the first to respond to that emergency with life-saving instructions. I am the first to alert law enforcement, fire and medical personnel to the cries for help. I am the first to hear and feel heartache and joy from people I will never know. I am the first to comfort those souls in need. And I will be the first to invite you into these four walls and experience my world. Not because I want a pat on the back or have grandiose feelings of superiority, but because I want you to understand it.Post Views: 515