Veteran's Affairs Plus W/ David L. Washington September 9, 2023

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You can see what's going on what's going on? What's going on? Good morning, Las Vegas. This is Veterans Affairs plus on 91.5, jazz and more. I am Dave Washington, your host. And I am excited about the two guests that I have on shortly. However, before they come on, I'm going to have a couple of quick announcements. One is that we're going to have another book signings in the month of September, at dollars restaurant, over on MLK the dates will be the actual time and date will be announced on on a later show. Also, next month we sell it my wife will be celebrating her 70th birthday. Even though it was back a few months ago, we just finally had time to get it all in because she kept saying I want my party. And Ronnie yo, well known DJ in the community will be spinning the tunes. And then finally, once again, I'm so excited to have these two brothers and, and two brothers that we lost in the past few months. I failed to get in. They're both veterans and I failed to get them on the show. And I say you know when God put some on your hard to do get busy doing it. So I have on the line. Two friends or colleagues, both chief officers retired. Dan Scott and Ollie Linson, both of LA County Fire Department. And also they're both military veterans and graduates of the Carl Holmes executive development as to Good Morning, fellas.

Unknown Speaker 2:23
Good morning, Dave.

Unknown Speaker 2:25
I, everybody. All right. Can you hear me?

Unknown Speaker 2:28
We can hear you now. Great. Look, I want to start out by first of all since this is a veterans affairs show, what branch and how long did you serve? We'll go with you first day.

Unknown Speaker 2:42
I was sent to the United States Air Force and serve four years at starting at Lackland Air Force Base and then went on to salute Air Force Base in Rantoul, Illinois, and wind into my service and Norton Air Force Base in San Bernardino, California.

Unknown Speaker 2:59
Oh, so that's how you get down to Southern Cal. Cool. That's cool. How about you, Ali?

Unknown Speaker 3:09
From Los Angeles, California. And in 1966, I was inducted into the United States Army. But I spend four years you know, in the Air Force, and 18 months of that was in the Republic of Vietnam and I finished my career and Langley Air Force Base in Virginia. Okay,

Unknown Speaker 3:32
so you actually, you know, I'll let folks know I'm a Vietnam era veteran I didn't go to Vietnam and and I thank God for that because you know getting shot at or shot is you know, you really putting it on the line for the country. But God bless you man that you got back and both of you guys join Los Angeles County Fire Department. What your from each one of you did you do and how long did you serve?

Unknown Speaker 4:02
This is uh, Dan, I served. I started my career in the Los Angeles County Fire Department in January of 1978. And retired in March of 2007 29 years. Yes.

Unknown Speaker 4:15
Okay. Olli.

Unknown Speaker 4:18
Yeah. Join the Los Angeles County Fire Department 1974 and I completed 33.5 years. Organism organization and, you know, you're doing those studies three and a half years I rose from the ranks of just basic firefighter, firefighter paramedic to firefighter specialist and that firefighter specialist rank has three components. You could be an engineer, you can be a fire inspector, you can be a camp foreman, you completed two of them. I was an engineer and a fire prevention inspector became a Fire Captain Steve Oh certified paramedic. And I was I became a battalion chief still, you know, certified, you know, battalion chief, but that was one, you know, Chief Officer. That was that was what that was a certified paramedic along with. And that was and that was Assistant Chief, Dan Scott, paramedic,

Unknown Speaker 5:21
Daniel Scott. Dance, you know, very interesting now, in terms of you ollie, what, what month and seven because I came on in 74, as well with Las Vegas Fire and Rescue. I came in September, as I recall.

Unknown Speaker 5:39
I was I got hired in April of 74. And I retired and what was it? Like October 2003?

Unknown Speaker 5:49
I did when I go October 1 or second? Oh, seven. Yeah. Oh, seven. But anyway, man, what? What a great career. Look. Dan, what were some of the different ranks you Hill?

Unknown Speaker 6:06
Well, I got to reverse a little bit and say, tell you that I began my firefighting career in the city of Rialto, California, in October 1873. Okay. And spent a little over four years there. I rose to the rank of firefighter paramedic, before I left, and I started with the Los Angeles County. Again in January of 1978. I rose through the ranks, so somewhat like Ollie. I also was a firefighter, paramedic and firefighter specialists. I didn't do fire prevention, but I was a drive the fire engine. Then I became a fire captain. And from there, I became a battalion chief. And I've retired as Assistant Fire Chief with the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Great,

Unknown Speaker 7:03
wonderful, wonderful. Now, both of you guys are graduates of the call Holmes executive development institute Iidea. Please tell our little listening audience a little bit about that experience. They've heard me speak many times about the institute because I think it's important for people to have an understanding of what those of us who've gone through, as well as I know, Dan, you were an instructor as well. In fact, your team taught with one of our colleagues who's deceased now that we're going to talk a lot more about in just a few moments.

Unknown Speaker 7:37
Oh, absolutely. I attended the first class with my esteemed colleague that we're have on the show Ali, listen. And we began the first class at EDI. So we were in the inaugural class. And after five years, so we both graduated. I think that I've always considered that the high point in my career. It was a priceless investment. I gained so much from it. One of the things that we say all that I am i Oh, and I certainly owe all of my success. At least in the fire department, to the brothers and sisters that I went to school with that EDI and I still have those relationships. It was just was priceless. And I think that every black firefighter in the United States should attend the executive development institute at New Orleans, Louisiana.

Unknown Speaker 8:58
Yep. Dillard University been there with the program has been in existence for 32 years and I think we've done actually 22 on Dillards campus. How about you ollie?

Unknown Speaker 9:13
Okay, first starting off to me, Well, I am a graduate of the first class of EDI and maybe I should probably say I am a proud graduate of EDI. Now I entered you know EDI as a person more like only the the I guess the layman side. But after after attending, EDI, Edi prepared me, you know to you know, develop you know, more skills, knowledge of the fire service Vitami what you with, you know, management skills and gave me educational opportunity, all my departments and also EDI had a certain component component, you know, have fun. And I'd say the reason why I say fun is because I was I was able to network with people, you know, from Close to close, close to close, not even close to close, you know, I think we had some eventually, people from crossed the Atlantic Ocean and down to the Caribbean beach became a part of the EDI, Edi branch and EDI family. And what that what that what that did with educational opportunities and what they taught me I went from just a person who had just the, you know, a, not even a supervisors, you know, understanding but it it taught me how to be a manager and how to understand and how to develop, you know, my management skills, and I took those management skills. And, you know, I was always a good student. And, you know, and and I, you know, we always studied together and we went up the, you know, we went up the ladder, you know, together, but it definitely gave me, you know, gave me that, that push to become a manager, and we saw the need for changes on our department. And believe me, we pushed you to make those necessary changes.

Unknown Speaker 11:41
Excellent. Well, this is a perfect segue into once again, Las Vegas. This is Veterans Affairs plus, on 91.5, jazz and more. I have two colleagues, fellow graduates of the Carl Holmes executive development institute, I want to swing into our deceased colleague, Chief, Herschel Clady, I want you to share some thoughts about him. He is a guy that I know we all miss tremendously. What a great leader he he has been and I always pray to God would be pleased and I hope that he was with the work that Herschel did while he was here on this earth. Either one of you guys can go.

Unknown Speaker 12:21
Well, a going joke between Ali and myself is Ali's got me by He's older than I am by about six months.

Unknown Speaker 12:33
Before you go, Ally, let me say this. Now, you to Herschel. Now where was Dixon it will see in the class also. Did you

Unknown Speaker 12:45
know he was in that class? Yes.

Unknown Speaker 12:47
So proud graduate of the first class.

Unknown Speaker 12:50
So how many of you LA LA County guys in their first class? Was it just the four of you, which is a lot? To be honest.

Unknown Speaker 13:03
Let's see. Oh, it was? It was myself. Dan Dixon, Larry Moore. Larry Moore. Okay. Anybody else? Dance? Can you think of anybody else? Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 13:13
Larry passed away. Not too long ago, if I recall correctly. No, no, not not Leia. What's the what's the brother from? He was from the eaglewood accomp. And I forget his name dark skinned brother. But yeah, Larry is still around. In fact, he does a lot for EDI does a lot of videoing for us. Right? Yeah. He just lost a son recently.

Unknown Speaker 13:36
Leroy Wickliffe.

Unknown Speaker 13:38
They were witnesses in their classes. Well, no, no,

Unknown Speaker 13:41
no, no, but but he was. He passed away quite some time ago. He was from Inglewood Fire Department leave right with Cliff.

Unknown Speaker 13:48
Oh, yeah. Yeah, I recall. I went down to his service. Yeah, yeah. Go ahead, Dan. I mean, I'm sorry. Go ahead. Give us some some input on brother Herschel.

Unknown Speaker 13:59
Yeah, you know, funny, funny thing. You know, how I met my brother. You know, I was my my first assignment, though, coming out of training academy was engine 58. And, yeah, we they, it was the old station that they build the the new station. Okay. We had moved up to engine engine 38 station 38 Where Herschel was assigned. So yeah, we got there. And that was an assignment for the day. And that was to paint the interior of the station. Right. I hadn't, I hadn't. I did not know what the time I don't even know if I even was aware of what he had. No, I was not aware of what he has done because tailor to what he what he did for LA County to get, you know, African Americans on the fire department. And if it wasn't for that, I probably would not have been on the fire department, he has he he taught me you know some things in regard to, you know, you you know, you may be the smartest, but you have to understand the logistics of Collier County Fire Department really fire service in general you can be the greatest, you know African American and walk this walk this earth. But you know what that such thing as favoritism and nepotism? You know, he he taught me that what my first experience with Herschel was we had moved up to station 38 And you know, the assignment was paved the interior the station, so we get there and you know, the captain tells us you know what, what we have to do for the day, but I never saw her show. Her show comes and you know, he says, hey, you know, you guys you know, it looks like that the equipment is here that you know, blah blah blah, you know, and I'm thinking I'm sure like man, I say, hey, this brother this brother is the boss man. You know, he was a firefighter

Unknown Speaker 16:05
running the show running

Unknown Speaker 16:06
the show, you know? So you know we all we just we paint and and I thought we were supposed to paint with with Captain our member who told me so many hidden Oh can't be just a firefighter. I can't talk me out here helping us I learned that that brother has had a skill of management and super visor real quick. I I became his you know, his engineer. Like I told him at his birthday party does engineer that you ever had that big and span shiny we go out you know compliments every time we take the risk out. But he always he was he was funny. he you know he would you when you when you drive and when you responded, and you look over and you will see him moving. And he always tapping his hands on the Senate console. I want you nervous or something. So many of you are new in my hand. You know that I ain't gonna hurt you, you know, but anyway, he always works with tap to send a concert with his hands and you'll kind of move with the turns or what have you. But it used to just, you know, it's like, sometimes you do things and, and it's not like it's annoying. But no, it was just me it was it was funny. Always. You know, keeping.

Unknown Speaker 17:35
Yeah. And the ironic thing, man, I've driven with him and then and Herschel used to drive me crazy. In fact, I remember when I used to come down and we play golf. And I would have the hard copy map quiz. Both Hirsch and Dan to one day, man, you got to get one of these things right here man with a woman to tell you where to go. And she gently ain't wrong. It took me a little while yet dad, as you may recall, but I finally got smart and I got Daddy, you lost the demo maps? Oh, that's a great story about that. But I mean, how about your dean?

Unknown Speaker 18:13
Well, anytime you talk about people like Herschel Clady, and they've washed into them and not a lesson, you have to ask the person that's allowing you time. Do I have a couple of weeks? And since I don't have a couple of weeks, when you talk about Herschel plating you really need more than a show to tell you how valuable this man was in all aspects of life. Yes, sir. At Herschel he was a had been a captain too long and coincidentally, Herschel Clady was the first black firefighter to ever promote on the LA County Fire Department. And he was not the first black to be hired. And no black tank there was at least 10 brothers on the job when he came on. But nobody voted until he promoted to like Ali and myself had indicated the firefighter specialists. He was the first black firefighter ever to do that and poisoned them that he was the first black firefighter to promote to fire captain. A matter of fact, when Herschel who promoted to fire captain, he joined the group of about 400 other captains on the job and he was the only black man I first met Herschel when I was taking my physical agility for the LA County Fire Department and he was a proctor. And this is a an absolute true story. As a proctor, he's the person that tells you what you need to do to finish this successfully finished the back part of the physical examination, right. And as he was telling me that given me my instructions, it occurred to me I said to myself, and this is an absolute true story. I said, this brother is taking the time to explain to me to make sure that I thoroughly understand this. This is, this is really unique. And he stood out. At that time, I didn't know him, never met him. But there was something special about him. Kind of like what Ali said, just just a couple of words out of his mouth, and I went, he's different. And I was a four year I was a firefighter with four years experience, right? I've never, never met any other black firefighter like that. So I'm on the job of a little while longer. And that's when I became friends with Herschel and long story short, I only have a few minutes. We've been we've been friends ever since. I've never met anybody like Herschel. I met 1000s, I would say 1000s of black firefighters. Right. But he absolutely stands out. I

Unknown Speaker 21:27
couldn't agree with you more. In fact, you know, he said something very profound to me. When my mother passed. You know how when we found out a close relative, mother father passed away one of our friends. He called me said, Man, I know how you feel. And he said, No, I don't. At the time, his mother was still alive and well. And you say, my mother's alive and well. In San Diego. I have no idea how you feel. But I know you must be hurting and I just want to call and express my condolences. I'm like, dang, man. Because you know how people's, you know, people will just blurt out when somebody's past. Oh, yeah, I know how you feel. He stopped himself. He say, I don't have no idea how you feel? Well, let me say in October Herschel and I know you guys have heard me say this many, many times. I was so jealous of Herschel. Because, you know, I had gene Campbell and Bert Washington. Those are my dogs, you know, we'd hang out together. But when it was when we're on a job, that's that's work it no friendship there. It's boss, you know, and, you know, supervisor etc, etc. But, you know, all y'all had a group of folks, you know, I know the main ones, you, Dan Ali. Jane, James Dixon may feel, and it was a couple of others. But I know you guys as the main core. And y'all made things happen on that department that, you know, sometimes I think our young people, they don't realize what you guys did to kind of push all many of the obstacles out of their way to include Well, I know he understands, because he and I've talked about it before the recently retired our brother, Daryl Osby, he understands clearly what you guys had done prior to his arrival in that department. And he knows it. Well. Man, I want to thank you guys for coming on. Because I think it was it's important for us to talk about our colleague. And as I mentioned to you, Dan, and Ollie, there's a book that I know that he was working on that I think some way somehow, we can get together and pull some stuff together and get that completely because like I told Herschel man, you have so much to say, and it's not about your ego. It's not about you. It's about the things that you've done. And I didn't see some of these things I hadn't realized too long after I had met Matt Herschel that he was a first, this and that. And I'm like LA County, they must have been around a long time. And it takes someone of that caliber man to stand up and take your rightful place in society, me because I always tell people, even though I didn't go to Vietnam, I am not a kid. When I was not a kid, when I came to the department, I expect give respect, and I expect to get respect and ain't taking nothing short of it. But again, I miss our friend so much for the thoughts.

Unknown Speaker 24:23
One last thought. I'm extremely pleased to announce this partial Clady as a captain spent a lot of his time at station 58. And the matter of fact, his name became synonymous with 58 words. You weren't going to 58 you were going to play the station. That was well known throughout the department. And we have the okay and we're going ahead with fire station 58 on the corner of sloth and in Fairfax in the Last night, California is going to be dedicated in the name of Herschel Clady. On February the 17th and 2024.

Unknown Speaker 25:09
Wonderful news, wonderful news, we'll make sure that they get shared. Because I know there's a lot of brothers and sisters throughout the country that know, Herschel and the work that he's done in this fire service industry, will will respect it. That is great man that, that you guys would push to have that done. I know.

Unknown Speaker 25:29
Well, one of the things I learned from Herschel was oftentimes, in a group setting person would say, we were doing this and we're doing this and, and, and referring to as the group of us, and I would pull him aside and say, Herschel, if we did, he would just, he never, never ever. And I'll go to my grave on this. I don't think he did anything to stand up. No, he was just that kind of stuff. Yep.

Unknown Speaker 26:07
Very true. Very true. So Ali, any further comments from you on hers?

Unknown Speaker 26:15
Yeah, I'd have to say, you know, I've met. I've met, you know, several, I mean, many, many, many, you know, chief officers over my career. I have not worked with, you know, many, you know, five chief officers, but Herschel is just, you know, he's one, okay. He knew this tray. He knew his trade. Good

Unknown Speaker 26:40
brother, that's going to be missed, for sure. But we'll keep his legacy alive by continuing the work that needs to be done. Closing remarks, gentlemen,

Unknown Speaker 26:48
there's a there's three fellows in this conversation. And I want to say something about the host of this show, Dave? horsington. I don't. We're talking about fine fellows. Dave, you wanted to find this. Firefighters, I didn't say black firefighters. You wanted to find his firefighters and wanted to find his people that I've ever met. And, and it's a blessing to me to have known. And to know, Dave Washington. Thank you.

Unknown Speaker 27:25
I appreciate it. Dan. Now, I got to explain to Wes, you're gonna say I paid you to say that. No, Dan, I'm just making a joke of it, man. But I appreciate that so much, Ali.

Unknown Speaker 27:39
All that I am i Oh, I live eternally. All right, that would be you know, I would I would have to, you know, say this for the host. I remember, you know, meeting you at one of the, you know, one of one of the conferences. And no, you weren't, you know, speaking on what was going on, you're in Las Vegas, you know, so forth and so on. And, you know, it was impressive, you know, to see you you weren't you were a captain at the time. It was impressive. You know, just to, you know, listen to you. And then you were saying like, man, you brothers, y'all need to come to Las Vegas, man. We need y'all to show up in Las Vegas. You know what? Next conference we showed up in Las Las Vegas. I met I met I met you Dave as a captain. And I remember the time span that had left what have you but next time I saw you was chief in Las Vegas.

Unknown Speaker 28:35
Going back as it was 25 years in in the hopper, foot world what I appreciate you guys and again I always admired but I admire so much about you guys and Herschel and all of the fellas that was in that same group is your camaraderie man. I never saw nobody's ego getting all out of whack. All y'all work together and I think again, y'all blazed the trail for them young cats and I hope that they do not forget you. Once again, this is Veterans Affairs plus on 91.5 Jazz and more. Thank you chiefs for coming on the program today.

Unknown Speaker 29:09
Thank you. Yeah, well well.

Unknown Speaker 29:43
Have a small county on the way

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Veteran's Affairs Plus W/ David L. Washington September 9, 2023
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