Name: Trevor Bankes
What were your reasons for joining the Viroqua Fire Department?: Ever since my dad joined I have been hanging around the station on Mondays for maintenance night drills and meetings, kind of getting a feel for what it’s like to be around the guys and what it’s like to be a fireman. Everything I saw made me want to join. I also wanted to be a part of something more than me and help people.
How long have you been a firefighter?: I’ve only officially been a firefighter since June of 2017, but I’ve been taking classes through Western since the fall of 2015.
What is your occupation?: I work on French Island in a semi shop.
Does your employer allow you to leave work for calls? How do they feel about you belonging to the fire department?: They don’t, simply because it’s not an option because I have an hour drive to make it to the station.
Have you gained any experience or knowledge from being on the department that has helped you in your job and personal life?: I have learned to be more level-headed in sticky situations, which has helped me to remain calm when working on something.
Is there a particular call or incident that stands out the most in your mind? Why?: The June 21, 2017 storm that flooded Vernon County. The reason being is that when Troy Sanwick and I went to Sidie Hollow there were people by the boat landing. I was grabbing a radio out of the utility truck and I accidentally turned on the siren, which that alone, it’s that big of a deal but because it was dark I couldn’t find the switch to turn it off right away.
What keeps you on the department?: The experiences I have when on calls or at events is one reason why I am on the department, but also because of the family mentality and the brotherhood on the department.