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Report from Engine Co. 82 Paperback – April 1, 1999
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About the Author
Dennis Smith is Professor of Sociology at Loughborough University, and the author of many books, including "The Rise of Historical Sociology" (Polity Press, 1991)
Top Customer Reviews
Smith captured forever the day to day grind of inner city firefighters, before air masks were used regularly. He brings the reader into the last days of pre-modern, urban firefighting, the suffocating heat, the blinding smoke, the gut wrenching fear and most of all the camaraderie that comes along with a job that requires disciplined teamwork and exacting attention to detail.
Report opens up with a fire, of course, where Engine 82 and Ladder 31 are forced to breach or break through a wall to get a teenager out of a rear bedroom of a burning apartment. The first two firefighters from Engine 82 enter without air masks and take a terrible beating before they're relieved on the line by two members who are "tanked up." Smith takes the reader through the entire event, step by agonizing step.
Smith lets us see the teeming ghetto that existed around his Intervale Avenue firehouse at the time - today, that same area is covered with single family Nehemia Homes. He takes the reader through the emergencies (gas and water leaks), car accidents, false alarms and spectacular fires, from a firefighter's perspective. In it, he chronicles the death of a fireman, from Engine 82, who fell off the back of the rig, or backstep, while responding to a false alarm.Read more ›
I just re-read the book, and doing so rekindled the respect and admiration for the heroes of the FDNY that it originally instilled in me 22 years ago. Recently a friend and I visited "The Big House" in the South Bronx, talked with the firemen, took pictures of the neighborhood, and brought Smith's book to life. The pull box at Charlotte St. & East 170th St. made infamous by Smith's book has been replaced by an ERS box; the crumbling, burning tenaments replaced by suburban looking homes. All that remains of the horrors that took place there in the seventies is the memories of daily heroism performed by the men of Engines 82, 85, Ladder 31 and 712 perpetuated by Smith's book.
Now a teacher, I'll be sharing Report From Engine Co. 82 with my class this year. I hope that with the use of this book, I can inspire the same respect, compassion, and concern for human life in my students that Smith inspired in me so long ago.
You don't have to be a firefighter or a "wanna-be" to love Report From Engine Co. 82. Treat yourself to it as soon as you can.
This book brings alive the fire service in New York City in the 1960's. This was one of the most challenging times in the New York City. During this time there were riots,a serious drug abuse problem, and politically charged agendas. But through all this the firefighters of New York City still had to provide fire protection to the citizens.
How many people can say that they know how it feels to be going to a fire to only find yourself a target for rocks, bricks and beer bottles. The men of Engine Company 82 and Ladder 31 found themselves in the situation more then once. These men had to deal with the pain and suffering of people that they went to help, and found that children involved made the job even harder.
Every shift they could look forward to arsons, malicious false alarms and the uncertainty of what might happen next. Did these men do this job for the money? I can say no they did not. They did it for the love of the job. That is why most firefighters do it. Most people and even some firefighters today do not realize the history and the changes that have been in the past 40 years.
I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to reads a book that they do not want to put down. Once you pick it up, you will not put it down until you are finished.
All in all, a wonderful story that grabs you at the beginning and doesn't let go until the last page.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This book as a great glimpse into the life of an old school FDNY firehouse. Dennis Smith writes a great novel! A must read!Published 16 days ago by mfullererie
This book gives you an in depth look of what it was like to be a FDNY firefighter in the South Bronx in the 70s.Published 1 month ago
Dennis Smith tells the story of fire fighters from his own true life experiences. It grips you at page 1 and makes you want more right up to the end. Read morePublished 1 month ago by James G. Scala
It's a very good book telling like it was back in the mid 60. I couldn't put the book down. It was very interesting as wellPublished 4 months ago by MsElver