IAFF Local 1403
Updated On: Dec 22, 2019

Hello Again, Everyone,

Episode 2 of MDFR Retirement Recon – Deferred Comp - is available for your viewing pleasure. Here’s the link:  https://youtu.be/sZ_bRx9bg14

If you want to get a jump on future postings, you can subscribe to the YouTube channel.

It was pointed out by Gabe Nemeth that many of you have never met or heard of me before, as I retired back in May of 2009. So he asked me to provide a short bio for you.

I was hired January 17, 1983, and was assigned to the north end of the county. In 1986 I became a paramedic. I became a SCUBA Rescue Diver in 1987, and was promoted to lieutenant in 1988, to captain in 1992, and to Battalion Chief in 1995.  I became a leadworker in 1997, and in 2000, I was asked to lead the Telestaff project in cooperation with the MIT Division to automate our paper rostering system. I spent 2 ½ years on the project before returning to Operations.

I spent most of my career in Battalion 3 with short stints as a lieutenant at the airport and at Station 2, as a training captain, and as EMS OIC. I had the good fortune of working with many great firefighters and officers throughout my career and feel blessed to have stumbled upon this profession when I was 23 years old. I retired after 26 ½ years as the Battalion Chief at Battalion 3 A.

I became certified as an investment advisor representative in 2008 and began writing articles for the Jumpline to help you be better prepared for retirement. I wrote an article every quarter until the Jumpline was retired in 2016.

In 2012, I wrote the book, “A Fire Fighter’s Guide to Retiring from the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Department “ and have produced several editions through the years to keep it current.

In 2015, I facilitated a mindfulness meditation study for MDFR in conjunction with the University of Miami and Chief Dave Downey.

I am truly grateful to have served our community and our department, and grateful to be able to continue serving you in retirement.

I hope you find the topics I cover in these video blogs useful as you continue to move ever closer to retirement.

Be safe out there.

Chief Gary Gonzalez, Retired

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