THE FIRST INGREDIENT OF A MIRACLE IS AN IMPOSSIBLE SITUATION
I write (primarily) fiction, so I’m accustomed to action-packed stories. Nothing, however, could have prepared me for Sherrie’s true-life thriller, Faith on Fire. Loaded with unexpected plot twists, conflict and redemption, this amazing book kept me riveted from the first page to the last. Sherrie’s captivating writing style will hook you, too. Whether you’re dealing with difficult relationships, bias in the workplace or personal/spiritual struggles, there’s something in these pages for you. Highly recommended! – Janice Thompson, author of over one hundred novels and non-fiction books,
Sherrie’s book, Faith on Fire, is a must read for anyone considering a career in the fire service, both male and female. Her story of the challenges she faced and overcame as the first female fire fighter in the Dallas Fire Department is at times shocking and at times humorous. But throughout it is her story of determination, perseverance and faith in the face of great obstacles to succeed in her chosen life’s work. I am proud to have had Sherrie work with me and to be my friend.
– David Baker, Deputy Chief, Dallas Fire Department (Retired)
Sherrie Wilson is a trail blazer and a true leader. As the first female hired on the Dallas Fire Department she endured excessive agitation and the vengeance of some defiant men firefighters to embark on a career in the fire and emergency medical services (EMS). Through her experiences and inspirational messages she has carved a path that others can follow professionally or personally. Thanks for letting me ride your coat tail because I get to experience the impossible and witness the miracles.
– Trixie G. Lohrke, Battalion Chief, Dallas Fire Department
Change is many times not requested, often times it is dreaded or neglected, but it is inevitable. My chosen profession was the fire service, a profession steeped in tradition, pride, trust in each other, and fellowship. For well over one hundred years, firefighters were all male. The job is demanding and challenging in many ways physical, emotional, psychologically. The men that chose this line of work are well aware of this and most are prepared to rise to any challenge. Not to sound silly, but you could almost smell the testosterone at the fire station.
Then in 1977 a major change in our city’s Fire Department came along . . . a woman! Sherrie was assigned to the same station and shift that I worked at that time. I hired on the department in 1968 and had ten years of experience under my belt when she broke the gender barrier. I worked for another thirty years until retiring in 2008. With this tenure I got to see and be a part of what was probably the biggest change that this department had experienced since its inception on July 4, 1872.
This book was written from the heart of an individual who took a gigantic leap of faith against all odds to achieve a goal that most thought was impossible, many thought was crazy, and some who to this day still think that women have no place in the fire service. Read her story about the good, the bad and the ugly that comes with trying to prove to yourself and to 1,400 men that you have got what it takes.
– Pat Murphy, Captain (retired), Dallas Fire Department
Back in the 1970s if you had a heart attack in Dallas, you, by chance, would have the best EMS /paramedic respond to the scene. As you are laying on the ground and hear sirens coming and the paramedic running you would most likely see Sherrie Wilson, EMT-paramedic from the Dallas Fire Department. Sherrie was the first female in the Dallas Fire/Rescue. Sherrie worked for years in the department, proving herself many times over as “the first.”
In thirty-five years of leadership and service in the Dallas Fire Department, she engaged her talent as incident command technician, PIO, training officer, driver-engineer, recruiting officer and as well as having fulfilled numerous other responsibilities. Sherrie’s business, Emergency Management Resources, prepares employees to handle a broad scope of challenges in the health and safety arena. Sherrie is guest editor for Industrial Fire World magazine’s EMS column. She has saved many lives herself through teaching skills to save a life. It’s been a privilege to be her mentor and friend watching her develop her full potential.
– David White, President, Fire and Safety Specialists & Publisher, Industrial Fire World magazine
Sherrie captures the spirit and is a model for women working their passion in a male-dominated environment. Lessons learned from these experiences will serve women and men today and far into the future . . . lessons of faith, giving your best, respecting those you serve, and bearing the brunt of whatever comes mixed with faith that God is with you is success by His definition. I admire the self-directed but not self-serving commitment to become a tremendous example for women in any career.
– Lynn Bourland White, CFO and Marketing Director, Industrial Fire World magazine
One would expect a wild ride of a tale through the eyes of one of Texas’ first feminists. Instead we are humbled by the story of a person who never gave up on a dream. From a young girl faced with a situation most parents fear explaining, to a young woman filled with determination and faith, Sherrie finds herself thrown into a world where feminine strength means nothing.
Sherrie faces fires that are unworldly only to return to a world in which she was just the same as everyone else. Will she break and pull the girl card to reach the top? Or will she tough it out and play a man’s game? Suspenseful, frustrating and yet inspiring, Faith on Fire captures the essence of humanity and the power of faith . . . on fire.
– Heather Bliss, BS Behavioral Neuroscience, graduate student, the University of Mississippi