God's firefighter answers duty's call

Posted Online: May 02, 2014, 4:50 am
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By Leon Lagerstam, llagerstam@qconline.com
MOLINE -- He asked for a simple sign from God, perhaps a bird, or something.

Suddenly, a flock of 12 geese flew over Jacob Pirmann's shoulder, right after he asked the Lord: "If you want me to do something more, let me know."

He and the geese totaled 13, one of his favorite numbers, commensurate of Jesus and His 12 disciples, but a number made superstitious after a Friday, Oct. 13, 1307, Knights Templar massacre.

The morning after Mr. Pirmann saw the geese, he was laid off from a lumberyard job, so turned his attention to what he felt God was calling him to do.

Mr. Pirmann, 28, founded a nonprofit organization called In God's Service Inc.

He also became a Silvis firefighter five years ago, and works a couple of other jobs to raise money for the organization now governed by a board of directors and a set of by-laws.

His organization's biggest project to date will be the QC Blockstock River Jam fundraising concert to benefit first responders and burn units across the nation.

The Emergency Service Rescue Providers benefit will be from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 10, at Bass Street Landing in Moline.

Tickets are $10 in advance or $15 at the gate. EMTs, firefighters and police officers will get in for free, Children younger than 12 will be charged $5 at the gate from noon to 3 p.m.

Advance tickets will be available at Walnut Ridge Studio and Ekim's Karate, both in Silvis; Werner Restoration in Colona; BP Chicken Shack and Gas Station in Rock Island, and 1848 Pub in Moline, concert beverage providers.

For location addresses or information, visit igsi.org, its Facebook page, or call 309-235-0320. If searching on the Internet or Facebook, include "In God"s Service Inc." in search parameters, Mr. Pirmann said.

The event will include games, raffles, vendors, a dunk tank and a bouncy fire-house. Five bands will perform, with local musicians performing solo acts between sets.

"We thought about holding a block party, and remembered Woodstock, and that's how Blockstock came into being," he said, adding they hope to raise $5,000 to $10,000.

Mr. Pirmann said he also hopes it will let "our immediate community know we want to become an international force."

In God's Service Inc. also is nondenominational, he said. "This is a faith-based organization for people of all religions."

"It's really not about religion, but it's all about what you can give to the world," Mr. Pirmann said. "It's not about giving 10 percent of your money to a church, but about giving 10 percent of your time to the world God created."

He said he's noticed how friends his age have had trouble grasping religious and church concepts or are uncomfortable having deeper discussions about them. "But they are good people who are trying daily to do good things."

"Creating harmony, humanity and hope" is an organizational motto, he said. "Together we can make a difference" is another slogan. Its logo consists of a squiggly-lined cross that, when folded together, makes a perfectly shaped cross.

"We won't be able to solve every problem," Mr. Pirmann said. "But we fail only when we don't try."

Another issue he said he hopes his organization can address in the future is the amount of wasted food that ends up in landfills.

"We've held a few fiestas and dinners, but nothing as huge as Blockstock. We're building ourselves up and trying to do everything we can. My whole heart is 'In God's Service.'"

Jake Pirmann
Address: Silvis.
Birth date: June 6, 1995.
Occupation: Silvis firefighter.
Education: 2004 United Township High School graduate; Black Hawk College, Moline; EMT and additional certifications.
Hometown: Silvis.
Family: Father, Craig Pirmann; stepmother, Shannon Pirmann; siblings, Jordan and Sara Pirmann; mother, Shemain Myers.
Favorite Biblical character I'd like to meet: Jesus.
Hobbies: Sky diving, riding his motorcycle, any sport and meeting new people.
One thing I feel strongly about: "Everybody can make a difference."
I wish I knew how to: "Break down the walls of religion."

Bands scheduled to perform at QC Blockstock River Jam, a fundraiser for first responders and burn units to be from noon to 10 p.m. Saturday, May 10.
Noon: Flat Top Band; classic rock
2 p.m.: Dirt Road Rockers, country
4 p.m.: Old 57's, rock 'n' roll/swing
6 p.m.: Smooth Groove, funk.pop
8 p.m.: Natty Nation, reggae
Pianist Kevin Carton and Gray Wolf band member Jim Ryan will perform between sets.


Local events heading

  Today is Monday, Oct. 20, the 293rd day of 2014. There are 72 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The store of Devoe and Crampton was entered and robbed of about $500 worth of gold pens and pocket cutlery last night.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Michael Malloy was named president of the Tri-City Stone Cutters Union.
1914 -- 100 years ago: Dewitte C. Poole, former Moline newspaperman serving as vice consul general for the United States government in Paris, declared in a letter to friends that the once gay Paris is a city of sadness and desolation.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Plans for the construction of an $80,000 wholesale bakery at 2011 4th Ave. were announced by Harry and Nick Coin, of Rock Island. It is to be known as the Banquet Bakery.
1964 -- 50 years ago: An application has been filed for a state permit to organize a savings and loan association in Moline, it was announced. The applicants are Ben Butterworth, A.B. Lundahl, C. Richard Evans, John Harris, George Crampton and William Getz, all of Moline, Charles Roberts, Rock Island, and Charles Johnson, of Hampton.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Indian summer is quickly disappearing as temperatures slide into the 40s and 50s this week. Last week, highs were in the 80s.

(More History)