Firefighter-paramedic retiring from career with Tiffin Fire Rescue Division
A firefighter-paramedic retiring from Tiffin Fire Rescue Division says the job has changed him in appreciating his blessings and his life a little more and knowing life is fragile.
People’s lives can change in a split second, said Michael Longanbach, 54, who is spending his last shift with Tiffin Fire Rescue Division today.
Longanbach – who has spent his entire 32-year career working for Tiffin Fire Rescue Division – said he has a lot of good memories and is going to miss the work.
He said he has spent most of his time in EMS and likes the patient contact and dealing with people. He said he loves the work, it is hard to leave and it was a tough decision.
“But, it is a young man’s sport,” he said.
Longanbach, of Tiffin, graduated from Columbian High School in 1983 and served in Ohio Army National Guard. He went through EMT school and was hired as an EMT in the EMS division in June 1987.
The fire and EMS divisions merged in 1996, and Longanbach became cross-trained. He went through Ohio Fire Academy and completed the fire school in the fall of 1997.
While working for Tiffin Fire Rescue Division, Longanbach was deployed to Iraq as a medic in 2003. He retired from National Guard in 2006.
Longanbach served as the president of the fire and EMS unions and was one of two people who negotiated integration for EMS.
Longanbach met his wife, Mary, who was a dispatcher, in 1989 while working for the city of Tiffin, and they wed in 1992. They had been married for 25 years when she died in 2017.
Mary retired as a Tiffin Police Department dispatcher in 2002, according to Traunero Funeral Home and Crematory.
Longanbach has two children, Emily Hill and Joey Longanbach; a stepson, Dan Kirby; two grandchildren; and three step-grandchildren.
Longanbach said he has friends at the station who are lifetime friends, and work is like a second family to him.
Next up for Longanbach is starting to work full time for the county’s Echo unit Sept. 1. He already works for the unit on a part-time basis and is to work two 24-hour shifts each week.
Longanbach said he wants to do some different things, to travel more and to go to Europe. He also plans to spend time with his children and grandchildren.
“I’ve done a lot of genealogy work,” he said.