My name is Sparky Sands, and yes, that’s my legal name. My mother decided it would be cute to put my father’s childhood nickname on my birth certificate. He had wanted to name me William, but that got relegated to being my middle name. I still have yet to stick a key in an electrical socket like my father.
Still, the name fits. I’ve been interested in fire alarm systems since preschool, and it wasn’t much later that I started putting together “systems” of my own using old devices, plywood, and scraps of computer cable my dad had lying around the house.
By the time I reached high school, I had amassed a decently-sized alarm collection and acquired my first panel, a Synthex 4004 from the year 199X. I decided to enter the field professionally, and majored in electrical technology at Punxsutawney Technical College.
After graduating, I was hired as a fire alarm technician by my former professor, Mark Ashton. He’s the owner and operator of the American Fire Alarm Company (or Amco, with one “A”), a small outfit headquartered right here in Hazard City, Pennsylvania.
This site will be dedicated to stories about my career in the fire alarm industry. It’s still a work in progress, but I hope you find the material here to be interesting.