On April 5, 49 firefighters graduated from the Boston Firefighting Academy and were sworn in to the Boston Fire Department. All 49 graduates were military veterans, the Boston Globe reports.
Boston Mayor Martin Walsh and Fire Commissioner Joseph Finn presided over the swearing in ceremony, which was held in a banquet hall in the neighborhood of Dorchester.
“I’m proud that today 49 new members will join the Massachusetts firefighting family, and I’m confident this new class of recruits will carry on the Boston Fire Department tradition of excellence,” Walsh said.
“Everyone of these recruits is a veteran," he noted. “We thank your families for supporting you, and we thank you for your service.”
While it is certainly remarkable that an entire graduating class was made up of veterans, it’s hardly surprising. As an employer, the Boston Fire Department places a high premium on military service.
To even be considered for a job with the department, applicants must first take a statewide aptitude test administered only once every two years. According to the City of Boston website, applicants who are “disabled veterans get preference first, followed by veterans.”
Kennedy, who died while fighting a fire in the city’s Back Bay neighborhood, was a Marine combat veteran of the Iraq War.
The 49 veterans who graduated from the academy now join more than 1,500 men and women in the ranks of the Boston Fire Department.
“I hear so much about the brotherhood and camaraderie of the force,” Kevin Oliver, a graduate who served in the Navy, told the Boston Globe. “I want to experience that and make those connections that last a lifetime, all while doing good and saving people.”
Hailed as a hero for knocking a shooter off his feet in a UNC Charlotte classroom, Riley Howell was posthumously awarded two of the military's highest honors in his hometown of Waynesville, North Carolina this week.
Howell, 21, and classmate Ellis "Reed" Parlier, 19, died when a gunman opened fire in their classroom in the Kennedy building on April 30.
(Islamic State Group/Al Furqan Media Network/Reuters)
CAIRO (Reuters) - After losing territory, ISIS fighters are turning to guerrilla war — and the group's newspaper is telling them exactly how to do it.
In recent weeks, IS's al-Naba online newspaper has encouraged followers to adopt guerrilla tactics and published detailed instructions on how to carry out hit-and-run operations.
The group is using such tactics in places where it aims to expand beyond Iraq and Syria. While IS has tried this approach before, the guidelines make clear the group is adopting it as standard operating procedure.
(U.S. Air Force/Airman 1st Class Alexandria Crawford)
A new survey of thousands of military families released on Wednesday paints a negative picture of privatized military housing, to say the least.
The Military Family Advisory Network surveyed 15,901 adults at 160 locations around the country who are either currently living in privatized military housing, or had lived in privatized housing within the last three years. One of the report's primary takeaways can be summarized in two lines: "Most responses, 93 percent, came from residents living in housing managed by six companies. None of them had average satisfaction rates at or above neutral."
Those six companies are Lincoln Military Housing, Balfour Beatty, Hunt, Lendlease/Winn, Corvias, and Michaels.
What's behind these responses? MFAN points to the "culture of resilience" found in the military community for why military families may be downplaying the severity of their situations, or putting up with subpar conditions.
"[Military] families will try to manage grim living conditions without complaint," MFAN says in its report. "The norm of managing through challenges, no matter their severity, is deeply established in military family life."
The suit meets the criteria to fall under the Federal Tort Claims Act, which allows people to seek damages in certain cases if they can prove the U.S. Government was negligent, The Dallas Morning News reported.
Under most circumstances the doctrine of sovereign immunity protects the government from lawsuits, but in this case U.S. District Judge Xavier Rodriguez held that failure of the U.S. Air Force and the Department of Defense to log shooter Devin Kelley's history of mental health problems and violent behavior in an FBI database made them potentially liable.