Reuben Burton has worked in the fire industry for 19 years. Today, he serves as an inspector for the Consumnes Fire Department in Roseville, California. This promotion, he says, that wouldn’t have been possible without the degree he received in 2017 from CSU.
“My degree has opened many doors. I now have the education to go along with my 19 years in the fire service,” he said. “My bachelor’s degree helped me start my career in fire prevention. Fire prevention is much different than being a firefighter on a fire engine. I now do a lot of fire code research, writing and public education that I did not do before.”
Throughout his career, Burton has witnessed many fires, some small, small tragic. He also been a part of relief efforts for many wild fires in California. Every September since 2009, Burton has also participated in a stair climb event to honor the lives lost in the twin towers on Sept. 11, 2001.
“Firefighters from all over California and beyond climb a total of 110 stories to remember our 343 brothers that made the ultimate sacrifice,” he said.
Held at the Renaissance Tower in downtown Sacramento, participants ascend the stairs from the basement to the 26th floor three times and then complete a final ascent from the basement to the roof for a total of 110 floors, the same distance as each tower of the World Trade Center. The firefighters who participate do so in full turnout gear.
“All 343 climbers carry a small, black banner with the name of one of the firefighters who died in the World Trade Center attacks pinned on the back of their coat, over their own name,” he said. “When we get to the roof, the name banner is hung inside two models of the World Trade Center towers. The names are then saluted, and each firefighter rings a bell that is engraved with each name of the FDNY firefighters.”
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