Perfect: Former Resident Makes Program History



David Stoneby Brad Gaskins
News Editor
Weakley County Press
David Stone said he’s always been a high academic achiever, but even he had to be slightly surprised by his scores at a firefighter training program over the summer. The 27-year-old maintained a 100 average on all tests throughout the 10-week Firefighter I course at the Tennessee Fire and Codes Enforcement in Bell Buckle and was voted “Best Firefighter” by his classmates.
He was the first academy graduate in 30 years to maintain a perfect score throughout the program, according to Martin Fire Chief Jamie Summers. “Everything I do, I try to give it 100 percent,” Stone said.  “I just went to class, listened well and studied.”
The course, designed for individuals with no previous firefighting experience, covered everything related to the profession: fire service history, protective equipment, fire trucks, hoses and different appliances for them, firefighting skills, search and rescue scenarios and techniques for fighting fires, among many other topics.
He said being named “Best Firefighter” by his classmates was extra special.  “You spend everyday with those guys,” he said.  “They’re just like family. For them to vote for me, that was a big honor.”
Originally from Jamestown, Stone found his way to Martin for college. He competed with UT Martin’s rodeo team in calf roping and steer wrestling and graduated in 2008 with a degree in management and accounting – with a 3.83 grade point average.
He was hired by the Martin Fire Department in 2013 and works with the “B” shift. “I like the camaraderie of it.  It’s a family affair,” Stone said. “You really get to help people at their point of need.”  Plus, he said the kid in him enjoys riding the firetruck with lights flashing and sirens blaring.
Martin firefighters Freddie Winstead, Jason Hauhe, Cory Green, Caleb Cooper and John Mitchell were among the “B” shift co-workers to attend Stone’s graduation ceremony.  Summers and Martin Mayor, Randy Brundige were also there.
Stone and his wife, Morgan have one child, a son Owen, who will turn 1 next month.  David is a 2004 graduate of York Institute. He is the son of Mike and Joyce Stone of Allardt, TN.