Multerer is third generation volunteer
Conner Multerer, 20, of Stratford is proud to be the first third generation member in a family to volunteer on the Stratford Area Fire Department (SAFD). Multerer, a 2018 Stratford High School graduate, completed the 96-hour firefighter 1 course at Northcentral Technical College (NTC) and he’s been a volunteer firefighter on the SAFD for just over one year. He responded to the most fire calls, 30 out of 46 total, of any SAFD volunteer firefighter last year. His mother, Michelle Multerer, a Fenwood native, volunteered for several years as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) on SAFD. His uncle Troy Wiesman of Stratford was a firefighter and EMT and his other uncle, Mike Wiesman of Stratford, was a firefighter and first responder on SAFD for many years. Conner’s grandfather, Merlin Wiesman, who now lives in Hazlehurst, was a SAFD firefi ghter and first responder for several years before he retired.
Connor is happy to carry forward his family’s tradition of providing emergency fire and medical services to Stratfordarea residents.
“I remember my mom going on ambulance emergency calls when I was in elementary school, and I also recall seeing my grandpa and uncles wearing the blue SAFD dress shirts and witnessing them move up in rank,” Connor said on Monday in the SAFD office. “My family members always tell me to be careful so I don’t injured myself.”
Tim Carey, SAFD chief for the past two years, said it might be common for other fire departments to have third generation family members as volunteers, but he said it is neat Connor is the first one in the SAFD. He said SAFD has several second-generation family members but it hasn’t had any third generation family member volunteers until Connor joined.
Connor began taking the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) class at NTC this week. He and his good friend Nick Manecke, who’s also on SAFD and son of SAFD member Warren Manecke, plan on studying this fall in the fire science program at NTC so both of them can one day work as full-time firefi ghters on a fire department in a city like Marshfield or Wausau. Connor describes why he wants to turn fire fighting into a full-time career.
“I worked as a welder on the road and I now fix small engines at Bill’s Service Center in Stratford,” he said. “I enjoy fire fighting so much more. When the tones drop on my emergency radio for a fire, I just get anxious and excited to respond to the fire so I can help people. Tim (Carey) has shown me the reigns on what the SAFD expects of me and that it’s not just about using water to put out fires, but it’s also about being a good character person in the community.”
Carey said SAFD, which will celebrate its 100th anniversary this summer, has 40 members, including firefi ghters, EMTs and first resonders.
The SAFD is currently planning a party at the fire department this summer so community members can help celebrate the department’s centenial. There are two Stratford High School students, Cole Varsho and Justin Briggs, in the SAFD cadet program during this school year. Bill Griesbach, former SAFD chief, started the firefi ghter cadet program many years ago to help SAFD recruit new volunteers.