The Boise Fire Department welcomed 21 new recruits on Friday, December 13. This academy is the largest in memory for Boise Fire. The 33rd academy consisted of 20 men and one woman. During the ceremony the new fire fighters had their badge pinned on by a family member and they were sworn in by Chief Dennis Doan. There were approximately 800 applicants for this academy but only 21 were picked to become part of the Boise Fire team.
The recruits say making it through the academy came with its challenges.
“The toughest part is that I’m the smallest person in this class," said Brandi Dee. "And when you have somebody like Jason Ellis who is 240 and 6’7” it’s a bit of a challenge to perform at the same level.”
Another recruit, Ethan Danielson, said the hardest part was the sheer amount of time that went into training. “Probably just the length – a very long time," he said. "What made that long academy easy were the men and women that were in it with me, made that very enjoyable.”
Boise Fire will hire 18 firefighters to start a new academy in March of 2020 due to a large amount of recent retirements.
“I was hired 29 years ago and in that [entire] year, we hired about 35 firefighters so it’s changing course and all those firefighters are retiring," said Boise Fire Chief Dennis Doan. "So it’s just been a huge turnover. And when I was hired and we had that large academy 29 years ago, they had nine fire stations and now we have 17.”