Local firefighters to wish the nation a ‘Good morning!’

DOVER — Sometimes it’s nice to get a little break from the regular routine.

Tucker Dempsey, the senior instructor at the Delaware State Fire School, and around 20 volunteer firefighters from the area got that break when they received an unexpected chance to star in a video on a cold afternoon on Jan. 10.

The short video was filmed at the Delaware State Fire School. It will be shown on an as yet-to-be-released date as an introduction on ABC’s “Good Morning America” or either leading into or out of commercials on the TV show.

Either way, Mr. Dempsey said, it was a different and fun experience and will bring some exposure to Delaware firefighters.

“We stood there as a group in front of our burn building outside — and we must have done this around 50 times — but they had us just basically say, ‘We are the firefighters of the Delaware State Fire School,’ and then we said ‘Good morning America,’ as they used a drone to fade back as it rose into the air,” Mr. Dempsey said. “There were probably about 20 of us in the video.”

Tucker Dempsey (left), senior firefighter for the Delaware State Fire School, talks to Jim Blanchard who was directing a video to be aired on a future episode of “Good Morning America.” (Submitted photo)

Actually, the drone turned out to be the key connection that allowed the Delaware firefighters to receive the extra recognition.

The Delaware State Fire School has been hosting drone training at its facility, mostly with state agencies, including the Delaware Department of Transportation.

Various state departments have bought drones that have to be licensed, so the fire school has become the state’s training agency.

As it turns out, Jim Blanchard from UAS Academy (for) drones, who taught several of the original drone classes at the fire school, also does a lot of side work for ABC News.

Around 20 firefighters from the area braved the cold on Jan. 10 to shoot a short video that will be aired of “Good Morning America.” (Submitted photo)

“I guess they contacted him and said they’re going to start this program either weekly or monthly where they’re going to have fire and emergency service agencies do one of these little bumpers at the beginning of the show or coming in and out of a commercial,” said Mr. Dempsey.

“(Mr. Blanchard) said, “Hey, I’m going to be at the Delaware State Fire School on these dates anyway, why don’t I just go ahead and film there first?’”

So the firefighters from Delaware were the first to record a video and will be the first to be aired, though that date has not been released.

This isn’t the first time that the Delaware State Fire School has been featured on television. The fire school hosted Steve Watson and the Travel Channel’s series “American Originals” in May 2012.

Mr. Watson became a firefighter for a day while taping a segment for his show.

However, the video shot at the fire school earlier this month was a different kind of challenge.

The video was a last-second production. So Mr. Dempsey said the fire school had to do everything it could to get firefighters from nearby to come out and participate.

“We didn’t know about the video too much time ahead so it was kind of a surprise,” Mr. Dempsey said. “It was great. We had people from a few different companies from the state coming in.

“Like we said, it was the last minute, so we kind of had to hurry up and get some people together that we knew would be around.”

Mr. Dempsey said he didn’t want to overlook other fire departments, but with limited time he had to try to get firefighters gathered who were near the fire station at 1463 Chestnut Grove Road.

“We kind of warned them that it was probably only going to be for a couple of minutes but if you lived far away it probably wasn’t going to be worth it to drive down here for an hour to be in a five-second video clip,” he said.

It all worked out in the end as all of the firefighters stood out in the cold to get the video right but still had fun doing it.

Delaware State News staff writer Mike Finney can be reached at mfinney@newszap.com.

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