In 1974, the television program “Emergency!” made Paul Brouwer, 72, keen on becoming a firefighter.
“It was all the rage at the time,” he recalled.
The current township emergency manager since 1991, he spent about 30 years in the Clinton Township Fire Department before retiring in 2004 as deputy chief of operations. The emergency manager position is separate from CTFD.
This month, the CTFD celebrates 75 years in operation. The department, which has five stations, serviced nearly 14,000 calls in 2019.
Brouwer was part of the first HAZMAT technician class with the Michigan State Police, developing a team of around 20 technicians and a couple specialists in the late ‘80s — one of the biggest in Macomb County.
He went from HAZMAT to working in specialties like high-angle rescues and confined spaces, to going on ambulance runs and being a first responder with EMTs.
“Now, every person in the suppression division is a full-blown paramedic,” he said.