Archive for April 8th, 2016

North Chicago Fire Chief Dell Urban

Excerpts from the

Twenty-five years ago, Firefighter Dell Urban’s greatest challenge in sharing the all-male quarters at the North Chicago Fire Department was simply getting enough sleep.

Urban, then a 22-year-old rookie, [said] the men’s snoring … drove her onto a couch in the station kitchen.

Fast forward to June 2012, when the North Chicago City Council appointed Urban to lead the department, making her the first female municipal fire chief in Lake County, and the fourth in Illinois.

Urban, 46, is one of two female fire chiefs in Illinois. The other, Tracy Kenny in Broadview, was appointed Monday night.

A year after graduating from Warren Township High School in 1987, Urban said she lacked direction until her brother, Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy Lonnie Urban, urged her to volunteer at the Newport Fire Protection District.

At Newport, she said, “They gave you a pair of boots and a coat and said ‘Here’s your gear. Welcome aboard. Now go fight a fire.’ “Since I went on my very first call as a volunteer, I thought ‘This is phenomenal.’ I (then) began my paramedic training, and I don’t think I’ve ever looked back.”

She was hired at North Chicago in November 1991.

“I was just thrilled I got on at North Chicago,” she said. “The majority of the guys were super. We had no issues.”

As chief, she oversees a department of 34 full-time personnel and one paid-on-call firefighter/paramedic. With an annual budget of $3 million, Urban takes pride showing off the department’s $775,000 ladder truck, $400,000 pumper and three ambulances, which run about $160,000 apiece.

She’s equally proud of upgrades at the main station by firefighters who installed cabinets in the spacious kitchen, chest-high partitions in the sleeping quarters and display cabinets in the station entranceway.

“Although it’s hard work and different work, I think I’m better suited now in this position to do administrative work and get the guys the tools, equipment and training they need to do the job,” she said.

Retired North Chicago fire Cmdr. Doug Henderson, whose son, Brian is a fourth-generation firefighter working for North Chicago, said that Urban “was aggressive and did her job. Even if she was tired, she went all the way till the job was done. Nobody can take anything away from her as far as her firefighting ability or being a paramedic.”

“At the end of the day, I still feel like I’m one of the guys,” Urban said. “I grew up with half of them. I’m taking care of them, and they take care of me, too.”

thanks Dan

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New ambulance for Evergreen Park

Excerpts from the Fire Service, Inc. Facebook page:

Here are a few pics of the Evergreen Park Fire Department’s new Wheeled Coach ambulance. Members of the department were at the factory to complete the final inspection. This unit features a custom Coolbar, LED emergency scene and interior lighting, and custom EPFD cabinet configuration.

A big Thank You to Chief Ron Kleinhaus and the entire Evergreen Park FD on this awesome addition to their fleet.

Congratulations to the Evergreen Park Fire Protection District, Evergreen Park, IL, on the delivery of their 2016 Wheeled Coach Type II Ambulance. Thank you for your continued business.

Evergreen Park Fire Department ambulance

Fire Service, Inc. photo

Evergreen Park Fire Department ambulance

Fire Service, Inc. photo

rear chevron striping on new ambulance

Fire Service, Inc. photo

new ambulance interior

Fire Service, Inc. photo

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Northfield Fire Department update

This from Larry Shapiro:

I stopped by the Northfield fire station and saw that they’ve changed Engine 29 to match the new Squad 29, with a black roof and new graphics. I’ve included photos of the previous graphics and the original delivery graphics.

Northfield Fire Rescue Engine 29

Larry Shapiro

Northfield Fire Rescue Engine 29

Larry Shapiro

Northfield Fire Rescue Engine 29

Karl Klotz photo

Northfield Fire Rescue Engine 29

Larry Shapiro

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