Fighting fires a family fling


By Scott Halasz - shalasz@aimmediamidwest.com



Capt. Brian Brennaman presents his nephew, Jordan, with his fire helmet.

Capt. Brian Brennaman presents his nephew, Jordan, with his fire helmet.


Jordan Brennaman (left) with his uncle, Capt. Brian Brennaman.


Xenia Municipal Court Judge Ron Lewis administers the oath to Jordan Brennaman.


XENIA — Being a firefighter comes with built-in pressure to perform. Buildings and lives are at stake every time someone calls 911.

But for Jordan Brennaman, a newly minted member of the Xenia Fire Division, there’s some added heat — pun intended.

He won’t just get called into the chief’s office if he goofs. He could face punishment outside the fire department.

“I’ll tell mommy and daddy on him,” XFD Capt. Brian Brennaman threatened with a laugh.

If you’re wondering if they are related, they are. Brian Brennaman is Jordan’s uncle, and his Jan. 21 swearing in continues a family firefighting affair that began way back when Brian Brennaman’s grandfather Walter Lange was a volunteer at the Beavercreek Fire Department.

“It’s always nice to see keeping it in the family type of thing,” the older Brennaman said.

He added that having relatives in the same department was omnipresent in bigger cities like New York. It doesn’t happen as often in the suburbs and in smaller municipalities.

“It’s a little harder to do in a smaller department,” Brian Brennaman said. “It’s nice to see.”

But keeping up a family tradition wasn’t necessarily a career goal for Jordan Brennaman. After graduating from Carroll High School in 2017, he went to Ohio State and studied business. After a year he decided that wasn’t for him and contemplated the military or a career in public safety.

That eventually led Jordan Brennaman to the Xenia Township Fire Department, where he was a firefighter and EMT beginning in July 2019. Then his uncle passively recruited him to the city … sort of. According to Jordan Brennaman, his uncle said, “Hey we’re having a civil service test. You might want to take it.”

The younger Brennaman took it, passed it, was offered a job and was was sworn in by Municipal Court Judge Ron Lewis inside the City Administration Building.

”It was too good to pass up,” he said of the opportunity to move from part time to full time. “Thankful for the opportunity.”

Jordan Brennaman finished up the schooling part of his training and spent the past week learning how the XFD runs.

“He was already familiar with the guys and how we operate,” Brian Brennaman said. “That should make it a little easier transition.”

Having an uncle on board won’t make it easier for Jordan Brennaman however.

“I’m sure he’s going to make the guys extra hard on me,” he said with a mischievous grin.

In reality though they likely won’t see too much of each other. Jordan Brennaman is on A shift at Station 32, while Brian Brennaman is on B shift at Station 31. During emergency call-backs, overtime situations, shift trades, etc., they may see a little of each other.

So when and if that happens, Jordan Brennaman will be extra meticulous.

“Internal motivation to not mess up,” he said.

After all, he doesn’t want to get grounded.

Capt. Brian Brennaman presents his nephew, Jordan, with his fire helmet.
https://www.xeniagazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/32/2020/01/web1_Brennaman-Swearing-In.jpgCapt. Brian Brennaman presents his nephew, Jordan, with his fire helmet.

Jordan Brennaman (left) with his uncle, Capt. Brian Brennaman.
https://www.xeniagazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/32/2020/01/web1_Jordan-Brennaman.jpgJordan Brennaman (left) with his uncle, Capt. Brian Brennaman.

Xenia Municipal Court Judge Ron Lewis administers the oath to Jordan Brennaman.
https://www.xeniagazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/32/2020/01/web1_Brennaman-Oath.jpgXenia Municipal Court Judge Ron Lewis administers the oath to Jordan Brennaman.

By Scott Halasz

shalasz@aimmediamidwest.com

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.

Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.