Ray began his fire service career in 1987 as a volunteer firefighter at Tarpon Springs Fire Rescue in Florida and was hired on full-time a year later. He became a paramedic in 1989, and in 1994 he transitioned to work for the Pinellas Suncoast Fire and Rescue District where is currently employed as a District Chief in charge of of command of control of incident operations and management. During his career he held the positions as Driver Engineer, Lieutenant, Training Chief, EMS Chief and assisted with the Operations Chief position.
In 1990 he began working as a medic in a Level 2 adult and pediatric trauma center (Bayfront Medical Center), and soon joined the crew of Bayflite, the hospitals aeromedical program specializing in trauma. It was a busiest trauma response helicopter in the nation with 97% of calls being scene responses. The program also provided services for All Children’s Hospital for pediatric and neonatal transports. He also became one of the primary preceptors for the emergency room and Bayflite. Flight medics routinely preformed advanced procedures (Chest tubes, central lines and surgical airways) in the field and in the hospital setting. Bayflite medics were known for advanced airways skills. Certifications held, Florida Paramedic License, Advanced Cardiac Life Support instructor/provider, Basic Trauma Life Support Instructor/provider, Pediatric Life Support Instructor/provider, Neonatal Advanced Life Support provider, Basic Life support Instructor/provider, International Trauma Life Support provider, Pre-Hospital Trauma Life Support Provider.
Ray also worked at the Pinellas Fire academy teaching mostly live fire exercises to new recruits and coordinated with other training chiefs in the county to provide inter-agency training drills.
During his off hours, Ray joined his wife to start up a nonprofit she co-founded for combat veterans where he functioned as the fitness and event coordinator. This organization utilized alternative therapies to assist Veterans with PTS transition back to civilian life and help with stress management. He also taught martial arts (Kali-stick and knife fighting) as an alternative modality to help mange stress and be present in the here and now. Ray recognized the overlapping need for these modalities and helped guide the program to provide services to first responders with PTS.
Ray is a lifelong practitioner of martial arts, owns a martial arts school and has a passion for fitness. Ray has studied multiple Filipino Martial Arts, Wing-Chun, Mixed Martial Art (TKD, Jujitsu, Judo Sambo mix) Kuntao/Silat and has added BJJ training to his studies
Filipino Combat Systems Kali – Rank- Guro (5thdegree)
Pekiti Tirsia Tactical Association PTK Tri-V- Rank- Lakan Guro
Pekiti Tirsia Tactical Association Tri-Com – Rank- Instructor (Edged Weapons Countermeasures, Duty Knife as a Backup Weapon)
Bonowi USA & Survival Edge Tactical Systems –Rank- Bonowi Camlock Baton Advanced Instructor
Urban Tactical- Rank- Instructor
Suncoast MMA- Rank- Brown Belt
He became a yoga instructor and co-owns and manages a yoga studio with his wife Janel where they also provide services for veterans and first responders.
Ray is entering his 34th and final year in the fire service and is looking forward to reti