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Senior Member Spotlight

posted Nov 24, 2010, 10:25 AM by Charles Mitchell   [ updated Nov 24, 2010, 10:26 AM ]

16 November 2010 - John Smith a 50 plus year Aetna member joined the Company when it was a single station department. John is the brother of Allen Smith past Treasurer and Director, a brother of the late Chief G.W. Smith and uncle to Past Chief and current Director Jeff Smith. John held several fire line offices at Aetna including Pipesman yes, Pipesman. (See John and he will tell you the duties). His highest rank was Deputy Chief. He was an active firefighter until he moved downstate. John retired from the Delaware State Fire School as a Senior Instructor. He was hired at the school by the Founding Director Lou Amabili. John was a mainstay as an instructor at the Fire Department Instructors Conference (FDIC) when it was held in Memphis TN. At the time there was little if any AV presentations provided in any fire training offerings.


Because of the work John and others developed at DSFS John was chosen to head up all audio visual at the FDIC. John combined his talent for teaching, his knowledge of fire department operations and his innovation in production to make the FDIC the premier training event in the fire service, a distinction it still enjoys today. As a symbol of his contributions John was appointed “Honorary” Fire Chief by the Memphis Fire Department. John displays his gold MFD badge proudly on the right breast of his Aetna Class A uniform (seen in the photograph). As an fire instructor and AV guru, John traveled across the country teaching others how to enhance their training sessions. John’s innovative work set the bar for fire instructors all over the world. A walking encyclopedia of Aetna history, John can be found each Thursday morning at Station 10 having coffee with the “old guys”.

Written by S. Austin, Aetna HH&L

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