Feb 11, 2020 7:00 AM
Kenny Gabriel
Coeur d'Alene Fire Department

First responders…the image of a fire fighter in protective suit (turnout), helmet, and self-contained breathing apparatus framed in a netherworld of flames hurdles into our consciousness.  Contrary to natural inclination, they are trained to run TO danger while most of us FLEE in the face of it.  When done properly, their approach to contain and mitigate danger is the result of well executed training, coordinated chain of command, communication, and equipment suited for the job.

Chief Gabriel has been with the Fire Service for over 25 years with most of those years serving in the Coeur d’Alene Fire Department.  Fire fighting seems to be in his genes.  Both his father and brother were in the fire service and with his first sniff of smoke on a pair of turnouts (slang for fire suits) he was hooked and knew this was his calling.  Working his way up the ladder as a “reserve firefighter, dispatcher, full-time firefighter, and engineer,” set the stage for him to take on the responsibilities of Chief of the Coeur d’Alene Fire Department in April of 2000.  Self-described as “shy” by nature, he has nonetheless assumed leadership roles as President of the Idaho Fire Chiefs Association and Immediate Past President of the North Idaho Fire Chiefs Association.  We are fortunate to have Chief Gabriel as Sunrise Rotary’s Guest Speaker on Tuesday, February 11, 2020, at 7:00 AM.  Join your early morning Rotary revelers as we enjoy a delicious breakfast, a full-bodied cup of coffee, and learn what it is that enables first responders to confront the dangerous work that they do on our behalf.