"It's a lot of fun to watch the new guys on hot calls," remarked firefighter/paramedic Shane Castle, a veteran with more than 10 years at the department.

He was sitting with Funicello on a Saturday morning at the station dining table, the unofficial gathering place at every firehouse. The two talked about what Funicello learned in school, compared to what Castle has picked up over the years. Talking about a recent car crash, they explained how the driver complained of neck pain but couldn't tell them what happened. While Funicello checked vital signs and looked for other clues, apparatus operator Doug Ketelson, another veteran, noticed a tiny star-shaped crack on the windshield, just about exactly at head level to the victim. He made the call that her head had struck the window. And he was right.

Ketelson says every call he has ever gone on runs like a slide show in his head. He'll replay the slides afterward. Other firefighters talk about running through drills in their sleep