Associate Spotlight: Paul Wilhelm
February 13, 2023 | Category: News
Paul Wilhelm, Cetronia Ambulance Corps
After 34 years of being a full-time associate at Cetronia Ambulance Corps, Paul Wilhelm, a.k.a. “Beefy,” has “retired” to a part-time position effective January 1, 2023. We wanted to shine a light on Paul’s career and what his plans are in the future.
What led you to becoming a paramedic?
Natural progression. I began my emergency services career as a firefighter at Dewey Fire Company in 1973. I became an ambulance attendant in 1974, an EMT in 1978, was accepted in paramedic school in 1986 and went on command January 1, 1988.
What were your favorite parts of being a paramedic?
It’s all about the patients. I really enjoy the interaction with them. It is very satisfying to be able to assist them at a very bad time in their life. But what I enjoy the most is having the ability to educate the patients and their families about their disease processes. I am really amazed that many of the people I saw during my career don’t have a concept about what is going on in their bodies and how to avoid many of their problems. I get great satisfaction from being able to give them some insight that they never had before.
What advice would you give to aspiring paramedics?
I would say two things. Don’t treat what you do here as just a job. Don’t ever forget that you are treating and transporting people, not cargo. Secondly, don’t stop learning. EMS is constantly changing and you have to be able to change with it. New equipment and treatments are constantly evolving to allow us to be better at what we do. It is your responsibility to maintain your patient care to the highest standards so that you can give your patients the care that they deserve.
What is your favorite memory at Cetronia?
After 34 years, there are way too many to count. However, the best thing that came out of my time here is meeting my wife. At the time, she was a nurse in the Neuro ICU and we went on a transport to New York City together. We started dating soon after that and we just celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary last year.
What are your retirement plans?
I am not fully retired. I will be maintaining part time status and plan to work a few shifts per week. It is nice to be able to work when I want to, not when I have to. I will now also be able to become more active in my Lion’s club and at my church. All that and my wife’s plans for us will keep me pretty busy.