Members of the Santa Monica (CA) Fire Department recently bid farewell to longtime Fire Captain Jerry Parker, who in December hung up his helmet after 46 years on the job.
Parker was the most senior paramedic in Los Angeles County, and helped establish the first paramedic engine company in the country. In 1974, the Santa Monica Fire Department began its paramedic delivery service and Parker volunteered to be in the first paramedic class at Los Angeles County General Hospital. After training, Parker went on to become the first Engineer Paramedic in the department’s history, with service delivered from a fire engine with a crew of four personnel, two of whom were certified paramedics. He was also one of the department’s first certified fire investigators, and is considered one of the driving forces behind its improved aircraft rescue firefighting (ARFF) capabilities.
As noted in an interdepartmental memorandum on Parker’s retirement:
“The fact that Captain Parker was willing to stay on the job and work hard for fourteen years beyond his ‘maxed-out’ retirement age tells us everything we need to know about him. He loved what he did and he did it all for his love of the Fire Service and members of the Santa Monica Fire Department. People like Jerry Parker are rare and we should be grateful we know him and had the honor to work beside him. He is an irreplaceable and valuable asset and there is truly a void left in the space he occupied.”
Read the full memorandum HERE (PDF, 76 KB) .
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End of an era. After 46 years on the job, the “Senior Man” has left the building. You will be greatly missed Captain Jerry Parker! What an amazing career. One of the first Paramedics in #losangelescounty and the most senior. Thank you for all you have done for the SMFD and the #santamonicafirefighters ?// #santamonica #santamonicafire #firefighters #paramedic #welovesantamonica #losangeles #california #oldschool #theseniorman #firecaptain #tailboardfirefighter #endofanera