Local firefighters make TikTok debut
Squad shows off dance skills to highlight work of first responders.
Addie Powell and Noah Chesshir of the youth group B.A.T.S., center in white, lead firefighters from Station 8 in Springfield in a video shoot for TikTok in recognition of First Responder Appreciation Week activities.

Firefighters never know what they may face on a given day. Six firefighters from Springfield’s Station 8 recently faced something their training and skills could never have prepared them for – a Tik- Tok video.

Lt. Korge Mori of Station 8 told his squad at 9 a.m. on Sept. 16 they would be dancing to the Bruno Mars song “Count On Me” for a 15-second video for the social media site where many, especially young people, lip sync and dance to popular songs.

The video was done as part of First Responder Appreciation Week activities, recognizing those who are on the front lines battling the opioid crisis in Clark County, running through Sept. 25. Though he and his colleagues are in the spotlight, Mori wants the video to bring recognition to the unsung people of the fight.

“We get a lot of credit but the real heroes in the county and city are those who bring attention to their efforts,” he said.

Mori answered the call when Beth Dixon of the Clark County Substance Abuse, Prevention, Treatment and Support, who is coordinating the week’s activities, suggested his team for the project.

While enthusiastic about the video, Mori and company didn’t know the first thing about what goes into making one. Helping with that were Global Impact STEM Academy students Noah Chesshir and Addie Powell of the recently-formed youth community service group, Bringing Awareness To Students or B.A.T.S.

Clad in their gear and helmets, the Station 8 crew including Sean Pierce, Corey Miller, Jimmy Powell, McKenzie Rucker and Jenna Bennett joined Mori in front of the station with the fire engine lights adding atmosphere behind them.

Chesshir and Powell led their charges through a few moves until they got it just right. The crew didn’t seem to mind, getting into it more and more with each take.

When it was finished, the firefighters joked it wasn’t as painful as they thought it would be. 

“Corey found his calling,” Pierce said with a laugh about his colleague. “We’re glad to promote the fire department.”

Another crew member hoping for an incentive if this video doesn’t lead to “Dancing With the Stars” or “America’s Got Talent” was overheard saying, “You’re gonna owe me hours.”

Mori admitted he isn’t a dancer and doesn’t do social media, but he does want to raise awareness of the importance of first responders in the community.

“I don’t connect with how the current generation does things but when it’s done in a meaningful way like this, I don’t mind if I look foolish,” Mori said, smiling.

Chesshir and Powell admitted to nerves although they were more in the background.

He admitted to losing sleep due to nerves and excitement, but both are ready to do future videos when not working with B.A.T.S projects.

To view the video, go to the Springfield Fire and Rescue Facebook page.