Trust me, it takes time to get back in the swing of things after traveling to South Dakota and then Indianapolis in the same week. Most importantly, I have to reconnect with my family and catch up with what I have missed. The truth is that when I returned from FDIC about 3 years ago, I felt like I would never catch up with all of the messages and emails…I still feel that way today…3 years later.
This year for FDIC, I traveled with Captain Wines (IronFiremen.com), Andrew Catron (ModelCityFirefighter.com) and Preston Wiley (Valley of the FOOLS). We also had Matthew Schimmel with us as a photographer (view photos).
On all three days, I was set up to be in the Black Diamond Booth with Captain Wines. Thursday and Friday, I also spent time in the Demers Ambulances booth (read part I for that). I actually missed Saturday in the booth. Instead, I headed to Dayton, Oh to spend time with family at my Uncle’s funeral. It was an honor to be present at the funeral as the rest of my family could not make the trip. It was only by chance that I was 2 hours away in Indy. Andrew Catron (ModelCityFirefighter.com) filled in for me on Saturday. I am grateful for his help.
On Friday, Captain Wines and I spent the second day in the Black Diamond booth. Our relationship with Black Diamond goes back 4-5 years. BD was one of the first companies who came out to support FireCritic.com through advertising. They were there for the Blog of the Year contests, and many other give-aways along the way. They have been loyal, much as I have been loyal to my advertisers. That loyalty is something I hold near and dear to my success and future of FireCritic.com. More than that, they are friends. I know them personally and I know they are a great team with a great product.
If you saw us in the booth, we were joined by Claudia and Mary. The two models have actually been with the company and helping out at trade shows longer that Captain Wines and I.
One of the highlights of our time in the Black Diamond booth was when FF/Medic Corey Breese brought by the Greenfield (IL) FD Cadets to meet Captain Wines and I and asked us to offer a few words of advice. Any time we can speak to firefighters is a good time. We didn’t have time to put something together, so they got to hear us shoot from the hip. Hopefully we were able to provide something useful for their use in their fire service careers. Here is the follow up message:
Lt Fleitz. Once again I can’t thank you and Captain Wines enough for taking time out of your day to speak to the Cadets. Especially for driving home the point of love for job, and reminding them what Brotherhood is about. Thanks again – Corey Breese
Black Diamond is a leader in firefighting turnout boots. Their X2 boot is the best on the market in my opinion. I have worn others, and most I don’t have anything bad to say about their products. Quality, longevity, and comfort are what come to mind when I think of the X2′s. I have been wearing them for about 3 years now and I love them. No leaks, they are comfortable, they still look new, and they still stand up straight. I could go on, but I won’t bore you. Do yourself a favor, if given the opportunity you should at least try them on. You will know what I am talking about.
I appreciate the friendship and business relationship with Black Diamond and look forward to many more years supporting the company.
There are still a couple more articles I will write on FDIC. Look for them in the coming days…including the wrap-up of the 2014 Firefighter Turnout!