'You can do anything': Shift at Deptford Fire Department features company staffed only with women

"You can do anything you set your mind to!" That's the message female firefighters in Deptford are hoping to spread. 

As Women's History Month comes to a close, it's fitting that Saturday's shift at the Deptford Fire Department featured a company staffed by all women. 

It's a sight not often seen in the male-dominated field. 

"It’s very rare, very rare. I mean, we’ve had obviously a couple of us on duty for duty crews together, but this is the first time we’ve done a truck of just females running the station."

"We run duty crews in Deptford and they are typically a five-person crew., Jennifer Smith said.  "We can add in a junior. so today we have five females and one junior member."

Deptford Fire Department has been around for more than 100 years. but this has always been a family business, according to mother-daughter duo Megan & Debbie Thelen.

"This is great, this is family affair for us. My husband is the station captain, our son is a student at UD is also a firefighter here so she’s second generation."

Her daughter has taken the baton and ran with it to inspire a younger generation. 

"It’s awesome, I love to do this," Megan said. "It’s important, now I'm starting to be involved more with the cadet program which is getting kids 12-16 to come out and learn more about the fire station."

Lt. Smith says the power of perseverance also plays a large role in being a female firefighter. 

"It's rewarding," she said. "At times it can be tough because yes, it is a male-dominated field, but here, particularly it's not so much." 

The department is hosting a cadet recruitment night for children ages 12 to 16 on Tuesday for anyone interested in joining the profession. 





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