Firefighter Q&A: Christopher Koretski, lieutenant with the Watch Hill Fire Department

Firefighter Q&A: Christopher Koretski, lieutenant with the Watch Hill Fire Department

What inspired you to become a firefighter/EMT? 

I’ve wanted to be a firefighter since I was very young. My great grandfather G. Byron Champlain was the founding chief of the Ashaway Volunteer Fire Association and his became chief after him. My uncle is also a volunteer firefighter in Westerly, so firefighting has been in my blood for generations. I joined the Misquamicut Fire Department at the age of 14 in 2008 and have continued to volunteer there, as well as a member of the Watch Hill Fire Department since 2011.

What is the most challenging/rewarding aspect of your job as a firefighter?

The most challenging aspect is seeing people in distress, although providing help is also one of the most rewarding. When someone is calling 911, they are having the worst day of their life, so we are here to work toward fixing that issue for them. Fire service members across the world are known as problem solvers. We never give up and always looking to find a solution to help those who call, no matter what it takes.

What is your favorite part of the job?

I personally love the encounters with the public, especially with the kids. I remember being a little guy just wanting to see the fire trucks because I thought they were the coolest thing. I guess I still do. I try and take every opportunity I have to visit with the kids, let them see the fire trucks, educate them (and their parents) on fire prevention, and tell them why it is I love being a volunteer firefighter. Hopefully these encounters will not only make their day, but give them some valuable safety information and spark interest for the next generation of volunteer firefighters to serve our community.

More about Christopher Koretski…

AGE: 23

HOMETOWN: Westerly

WORK: The Misquamicut Club, Watch Hill Fire District

EDUCATION: Bachelor’s degree in Fire Science from Anna Maria College (Paxton, Mass.); graduate of Wakefield High School

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— Jason Vallee


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