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Fire Men: Stories from Three Generations of a Firefighting Family Paperback – April 20, 2011


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Tribute Books (April 20, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0982256590
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982256596
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.7 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #915,780 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

A must-read around the firehouse. --Tiger Schmittendorf, RuntotheCurb.com

Fire service families everywhere will relate to these stories. --Gary Keith, Vice President of Field Operations, National Fire Protection Association

Every firefighter should read this. --Fred Bales, CFPS, CFI, Pennsylvania Senior Fire and Public Safety Instructor & Past Chief, Greenfield Fire Company, Greenfield, PA

About the Author

Gary R. Ryman is the second of three generations of firefighters. He has a bachelor's degree in Fire Science from the University of Maryland and has been employed as a fire protection engineer for over twenty-five years. He is currently pursuing a master's degree in American History. Ryman is married with two children. His oldest son makes up the third generation of firefighters in his family, which makes him feel both old and young at the same time.

More About the Author

Gary R. Ryman is the second of three generations of firefighters, and over thirty years in the fire service, holding positions from firefighter to Chief of Department. He has a bachelor's degree in Fire Science and a Master's degree in American History. Ryman has been employed as a fire protection engineer for over twenty-five years. Married with two children, his oldest son makes up the third generation of firefighters in the family, which makes him feel both old and young at the same time.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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See all 17 customer reviews
Every fire fighter should read this.
fred
Gary Ryman's excellent memoir is the exception.
Amazon Customer
The book tells it like it really is.
David A. Moss

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By David A. Moss on June 25, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Gary's description of a 3-generation firefighting family was fun reading, entertaining, and educational as well. Having known Gary and his dad through the fire service made the book even more fun to read!

I would recommend this book to any family who has an aspiring sibling wanting to join the fire service. The book tells it like it really is. It is sometimes fun, sometimes very emotional, but always a learning experience.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By fred on April 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
From the first page, Ryman hits the nail on the head. He provides a riveting look at the fire service as a whole, and the evolution of the business over the last two decades. Every fire fighter should read this. Old ones to reminisce, young ones to appreciate where we came from.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Richard A. Ide on May 29, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
Gary Ryman's FIREMEN is a collection of exciting true stories from a volunteer fireman who rose from the position of youthful apprentice to that of Chief. A master at detailing and explaining the myriad complexities that attend the fighting of a fire, Ryman takes you right into the flames--be they teasing or vicious--which he became expert at battling. Gary pulls no punches: his mistakes are displayed alongside the victories; sadness and desperation at the scene of nightmarish vehicular accidents are not soft-pedaled. Nor does he stint on using the lingo, rough language, and raw emotions elicited from the men (and sometimes women) summoned to a fire or EMS scene. What makes this book so altogether absorbing is Ryman's sense of honesty, empathy, and humanity. He relays it to the reader with a natural literate sense and writing style that you might hardly expect from those rough-hewn types who are drawn to the world of fighting fires. The book covers Ryman's work in the Southern Tier of New York State, the D.C. area of Maryland, and rural Northeastern Pennsylvania, as well as training with his fire Chief father and bringing his own son into the field. Not just a a primer for the wanna-be, this is a work that might easily serve as a manual for any seasoned fireman. It will enlighten the unhosed; before finishing the third chapter, I locked my apartment door and trotted to the hardware store for a couple of smoke alarms.

Richard Ide, author of 3 ACES
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B. Jeffries on October 13, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I am a woman fascinated by firefighting and fire fighters - in other words, a fire buff. I have an enormous collection of stories by fire fighters. I bought Fire Men: Stories From Thre Generations of a Firefighting Family this summer, and I was delighted by author Rymans' story telling. He moves back and forth from stories of his time, his Dad's time and his son's time as firefighters. It's fascinating to see the similarities and the differences. I found his stories gripping, and felt like I was right there with the fire fighters.
If you are looking for a good recollection of "how it really is" fire fighting stories, particularly for volunteer fire fighters, this is the book for you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kathleen gerard on August 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
This memoir gives readers an authentic, firsthand account of what it really means to answer the call (literally and figuratively) to fight fires, day-in and day-out. FIRE MEN is a well-written, emotion-packed memoir which details, with unabashed grit, a very personal account of what it's like to serve on the front lines of danger. Gary Ryman writes engaging, dramatically-rendered scenes which offer harrowing insight into the emotional landscape of those who see the best and worst of what life has to offer.

To read this review in its entirety link to "Reading Between the Lines" - [...]
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By Richard on May 10, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
"Strike the box" is a term from the not too-distant past, used when fire fighters arrived at the scene of a reported car fire only to discover that it's a house that's on fire, and a full "box assignment" of three engines and a ladder truck is needed. Well, not only did Mr. Ryman strike the box of my expectations when I began reading "Fire Men," he went right to the second, third and fourth alarms.

Mr. Ryman begins his series of tales by putting the reader into a comfortable bed, only to jar them awake with a blaring alarm, getting them hurriedly attired in turn-out gear, and inside a house that's on fire--only to amp it up when a backdraft threatens his life and that of an already horribly-burned colleague. And I was right there alongside him, not only because of his powerful narrative voice but also because I've been there--as a fire fighter during the 1970s I was caught in a backdraft almost identical to the one Mr. Ryman describes, and I can say with a certain degree of authority that Ryman ain't lyin' about what it was like for him inside that inferno.

"Fire Men" has a tactile feel to it. As I read the various tales he tells I could smell the smoke, feel the leather helmet on my head, could hear the shrill screams of the mechanical 'Federal Q' sirens and the stutters of the air horns. I also felt the fire's heat along with the fear. Mr. Ryman begins with a literal bang and then falls into a series of random stories - and that was what he should've done, because it evokes what being a fire fighter is all about . . . of boredom one moment, empathy for the dead in the next, followed by sheer terror when all around it seems that everything is coming down upon your head.

"Fire Men - Stories from Three Generations of a Fire Fighting Family" is a well-crafted book that kept me turning the pages all the way until I reached its very satisfying ending. Buy it, read it and above all, hang-on as you ride the roller-coaster ride that "Fire Men" is.
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