Quaker Valley graduate has burning desire to help those in peril
When talking with Marty Davis on the phone, it's not hard to guess what kind of career path he hopes to follow.
Davis, 18, of Leetsdale, occasionally pauses as he listens via a portable radio to possible emergency calls in between the static noise in the background.
It's all about helping people — whether he ends up as a paramedic, a medic, a flight medic or works in emergency medicine, he said.
“I joined the fire department to help people. There was really no other rhyme or reason,” said Davis, who has been a volunteer firefighter for more than four years, starting with the now-former Edgeworth department, then moving two years ago to Leetsdale. This year, he began working with the Berkeley Hills Fire Company in Ross Township.
Davis graduated in June from Quaker Valley High School and also from the public safety technology program at Parkway West Career and Technology Center in North Fayette.
He works as a basic emergency medical technician for Robinson Emergency Medical Service in Robinson Township and said he plans to enroll in the paramedic program at Community College of Allegheny County.
Davis placed 10th in the SkillsUSA National Leadership and Skills Conference's fire-fighting division competition held last month in Kansas City, Mo., receiving a perfect score in one of the challenges.
The organization is a national student organization that offers training for its members and hosts competitions for career and technical students in a variety of fields, according to its website.
Leetsdale fire Chief Ernie Logan said he isn't surprised Davis did well in the competition.
“I wish I had a half dozen more like him,” he said. “He's always willing and eager to learn.”
To quality for the national competition, Davis first had to win both a regional round held at McKeesport Area High School and the state event in Hershey.
Davis said his public safety instructor chose him to compete in the competitions two years in a row because of his grades and work ethic in the Parkway program, where he studied fire-fighting techniques and other skills.
Davis, who competed against 25 others in the national firefighter division based at the Kansas City Fire Academy, said the hardest part of the national event was a timed Contestant Physical Agility Test.
Davis said even though the competition was difficult, he received a perfect score, finishing the challenge in less than the 10 minutes required, with no safety infractions.
He competed in the SkillsUSA competitions for the first time last year when he placed first in the local round at Parkway, and sixth at the state competition in Hershey.
This year, he was the only Parkway student to attend the national competition. However, five other Parkway students also competed in the state competition this year, including Quaker Valley senior Zach Mancuso, 17, of Leet Township, who placed first in the masonry division locally and fifth in the state.
Davis said the best part of the national competition was talking with different firefighters and EMTs to “see how different they do things in their states.”
Joanne Barron is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-324-1406 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Sewickley Academy grad shooting for the stars at Smithsonian
- 20 communities asked for input on Route 65 issues
- Leet treehouse that drew national headlines will be removed by December
- Sewickley officials tackle rising odor
- Water Works Road in Sewickley closed for months
- Garden club takes part in Sisters of St. Joseph effort to help feed hungry
- Nice play, Pirates — on and off the field
- New Edgeworth principal brings experience, passion
- Developer makes $1,724,000 deal for downtown Sewickley properties