Fire Lieutenant Julia Jordano embodies true commitment when it comes to serving within PWCFRS. Her passion and excitement are easy to see when simply asking her to recount some of her favorite memories.
“The absolute most rewarding experiences have been receiving thank yous from members I spent time training,” she began. “A lot of time was put into making me great, still have several mentors who are feather birds. They continuously mold me to be better, to be a leader. Words can’t describe when you get a message from a past member thanking you for helping them and teaching them, taking the time.”
She notes that paying it forward and passing on the time invested in her is infinitely rewarding. Watching those she’s trained branch out, land jobs and go places successfully using the tools and information she provided is indescribable.
“Another reward to being an OWL member specifically is the title. Some of the most amazing firemen, medics and leaders have been bred at OWL,” said Jordano. “We carry a reputation of being the best, and it’s an honor to volunteer here.”
Within all departments in PWCFRS, we are proud to watch the exceptional service our volunteers provide each day. The comradery, commitment and talent that result are more than impressive, as are the stories of success and passion.
Jordano notes that to her, as a female especially, receiving compliments on her responses and skills from other fire volunteers has made a huge impression on her.
“Recently I had a significant house fire. It was my first as an engine boss,” she said. “After the fire the compliments from other firemen I look up to meant the absolute world to me — having their approval and knowing ‘Hey. I made it.’ I have carried on the traditions.”
The fire service is made up of less than 8 percent female — both career and volunteer. To be one of those few and highly revered has been an enormous accomplishment to Jordano.
As her list of most memorable experiences went on, Jordano mentioned holidays spent in the firehouse.
“You don’t have an understanding of firehouse living until 10 to 12 of you are cooking vigorously in the kitchen and sacrificing family for community,” she said. “You just settle down to eat, huge plates of food, 20 to 30 of you there, and BOOM a box drops, or MVC, and the table empties.”
Jordano did not share this with sadness, but with passion as she has her other accounts. She notes that being a part of the parade of lights to save the day is something to add to your bucket list.
Through her years in service, Jordano mentions that no emotion has been left out — happiness, sadness, awe-struck, somber, celebratory and more.
“I still have a couple calls that I get nightmares about, but the majority are good memories, challenging and positive outcomes,” she said.
Through all of these emotions and experiences, Jordano’s time with OWL has provided her with — in her own words — everything.
“Look at me. I started at 16. OWL gave me everything I have today — a career, connections, knowledge, education, training, paid for my schooling, mentors,” she said. “I was able to buy my first house at 20, because I saved so much money living at the firehouse.”
She also notes that she landed a well-paying job at age 19 because of her VFD experience.
“I am now 30, have close to 10 years in a highly respectable fire department as a career lieutenant. I have been given endless opportunities by OWL, and they will continue throughout my fire service career,” Jordano said. “And I will for as long as OWL stands continue to pass it on and pay it forward, because I am forever grateful and indebted to the family of feathered birds, OWL.”
Ready to begin your own success story? Reach out today to learn more about our available volunteer opportunities.
Are you looking for a change? Here in Prince William County, the volunteer departments provide fire and emergency medical services to the County’s citizens and visitors during weekday evenings, weekends and holidays. Prince William County’s volunteer fire and rescue departments are seeking motivated individuals who have the desire to make a difference and provide an important service to their community. Learn more now.
- Posted by ATW
- On June 29, 2018
- 0 Comments