NOW:53129:USA00949
http://widgets.journalinteractive.com/cache/JIResponseCacher.ashx?duration=5&url=http%3A%2F%2Fdata.wp.myweather.net%2FeWxII%2F%3Fdata%3D*USA00949
68°
H 73° L 53°
Cloudy | 12MPH

Firefighting team shows its stuff in challenge

Greendale contingent counts intangibles

Sept. 18, 2008

Despite the thrill of competition, Greendale firefighters at the 2008 Paul Davis Restoration Midwest Regional Firefighter Combat Challenge had other things in mind than winning.

The main draw was the opportunity to personally challenge themselves, build camaraderie with other fire departments and give the public a glimpse of what they do on a daily basis.

“There’s this perception out there that firefighters do nothing but sit in the firehouse and collect a pay check,” said Lt. Dean Kozelek. “But when the bell rings, we go, and this is probably the closest the common man will get to what we do on a daily basis, without the heat and smoke.”

Kozelek was one of four Greendale firefighters to compete in the individual portion of the Sept. 13 event at Konkel Park in Greenfield. Luke Amann, Kyle Kierzek and Kurt Risberg also competed in the course, which required contestants to suit up in full gear and breathing apparatus while climbing a five-story tower, hoisting and dragging hoses, using their axes as needed and, finally, rescuing a life-size, 175-pound dummy — all head-to-head with another firefighter.

Several firefighters volunteered for the contest last year, but this was their first experience tackling the course, Kierzek said. Although they practiced several times on a mock course set up at the Greendale Fire Station, they weren’t sure what to expect in the actual competition — except for an environment free of pressure to perform well.

“No matter how we do, everyone cheers for everyone and they’re all supportive,” Kierzek said.

Still, Kierzek said before the event that he and his Greendale colleagues aimed to keep their times to 3 minutes or less.

All four came close to achieving that goal, and their times were within about 30 seconds of one another. Amann finished fastest, with a time of about 2 minutes 31 seconds, and Kozelek rounded out the group, with a time of about 3 minutes 2 seconds.

Firefighters described the experience as exhausting.

“When I got to the dummy drag at the end, there was pretty much nothing left, but I knew I had another 100 feet to go yet,” Kozelek said.

Likewise, Risberg said there was nothing that could have prepared him for lifting the 42-pound, coiled hose up the tower — or the rainy weather, which made for a slippery course and slightly slower times.

In order to qualify for the world challenge to be held in November in Las Vegas, male firefighters under the age of 40 had to complete the course in 1 minute 50 seconds or less.

“It gives us something to shoot for next year,” Kozelek said.

Greendale Fire Chief Jonathan Cohn said he was happy with the level of participation from his department this year.

“We went from zero (participants) last year to four, so it’s obviously a proud moment to see our members competing,” Cohn said.

Julie Becker can be reached at (262) 446-6606.

STANDINGS

Firefighter

Time

(in minutes)

Rank

(of 114)
Luke Amann2:31.70 60
Kurt Risberg2:53.47 83
Kyle Kierzek2:54.74 84
Dean Kozelek3:02.54 94

This site uses Facebook comments to make it easier for you to contribute. If you see a comment you would like to flag for spam or abuse, click the "x" in the upper right of it. By posting, you agree to our Terms of Use.

Suburban News Roundup

E-mail Newsletter

Your link to the biggest stories in the suburbs delivered Thursday mornings.


Enter your e-mail address above and click "Sign Up Now!" to begin receiving your e-mail newsletter
Get the Newsletter!

Login or Register to manage all your newsletter preferences.

Community Watch

» Updated weekly rankings of area prep football teams and players 02:25 PM

» Greendale Education Foundation announces new calendar raffle fundraiser 12:13 PM

» Greendale's Park and Recreation holds contest for new logo 11:38 AM

» Reiman Chapel in Franklin to host blessing, tour for public 8/26

» Young Oak Creek football team makes impression with rout of Falls 8/25

» Greendale police searching for strong-arm robbery suspect 8/25

» Greendale man killed in Washington County crash Updated:  8/25

» Oak Creek man killed in Sauk County traffic accident 8/25

» Oak Creek tennis team wins South Milwaukee Invite 8/25

» Oak Creek community buries time capsule at future city hall 8/25

» Initial Reaction Podcast: What stood out on the first week of high-school football? 8/25

» Oak Creek-Franklin School Board receives voter approval to add two more seats 8/24

» Oak Creek-Franklin School District approves preliminary budget, calls for tax rate increase 8/24

» Tickets now available for Oak Creek's Pig and Chicken Roast 8/24

» Franklin shows its special qualities 8/21

» Youthful Oak Creek football team impresses in 26-0 win over Falls 8/21

» Honeywell volunteers help repair Greendale veteran's home 8/21

» Fire destroys garage in Franklin 8/21

» Greendale residents can receive free 'File of Life' documents from Health Department 8/20

» The 2015 Suburban Milwaukee Prep Football Guide 8/19

» Greendale to share fire ladder truck with Hales Corners during emergencies 8/19

» Get to know: Franklin Sabers 8/18

» Ad-Tech Medical implant maker seeks new plant in Oak Creek business park Updated:  8/18

» Get to know: Oak Creek Knights 8/18

» Greendale Fire Dept. approved for temporary relocation in safety center basement, village seeks bids 8/18

View All Posts Got a tip? Welcome rss

Advertisement

Advertisement

Local Business Directory

CONNECT    

Advertisement

Most Popular