CRACKYL Magazine has sourced and pulled together some of the greatest minds in their fields to create articles and content that support the six pillars of a firefighter in an effort to balance their personal and professional lives. Pearn wants firefighters to be able to pick up the magazine, or sign in online, and connect with the content they are reading. Pearn knows that personal growth first starts with acknowledging firefighters are not perfect – which is hard for firefighters who work in a career that has no margin for error. One mistake can hurt not only yourself, but your team as well. At the end of the day, the only firefighter that gets left behind is you – at CRACKYL we want to change that.

A note from our Editor in Chief

Being a career firefighter, Kory Pearn knows how important each facet of the job is. Whether it be his role as Captain or crew member, Pearn acknowledges how difficult it is to be a successful firefighter in more aspects than simply the job. After having watched many firefighters walk away from the career without looking back, he began to worry about the support that firefighters were receiving.

Pearn learned a long time ago that balance needed to be present on and off the job and went through his own journey to health both physically and mentally. Kory knew that the recurring themes of struggle in firefighter’s personal and professional lives were being ignored and it was something that he felt needed a global approach.

“What we aren’t changing, we’re choosing. I don’t so much mean this as an individual but as the fire service collectively”

— Kory Pearn

Sometimes perfect is the enemy of good”. In 2016, I was hospitalized and fighting for my life because my heart was so fatigued from a persistent irregular heart rhythm that I chose to ignore.  Stubborn wouldn’t even begin to describe how I was handling the problem.  I ignored and hid the symptoms for eight years. I thought the problem was all in my head and as it turns out, the only thing that was in my head was denial.  I underwent multiple ablations to restore a healthy heart rhythm and was off work for an entire year while my heart was healing and strengthening. Going through the health ordeal wasn’t the hard part for me at all, it was the fact that my phone stopped ringing with people asking me to help them or wanting to hang out and go for beer.  I became the person who depended on those around me for help and I hated it!  I had to learn to be okay with not being okay and I found the longer I was away from the firehall the harder it was mentally to return to the floor.  A lot of self-doubt crept inside my head and I became suspicious if I could even do my job anymore. I realized that this quest for perfection that I was chasing wasn’t realistic or healthy.  I began to embrace the fact that I could be both the hero and the patient, the father and the son, the inspiration and the sympathy.  When your life, as you know it, is stripped away from you, you have two choices: let it beat you or let it inspire change.  I chose the path of inspiration and that path led me to creating CRACKYL Magazine. 

“You are never alone until you choose to be and even then, you’re not alone.”

CRACKYL Name Inspiration

The inspiration behind the name CRACKYL comes from a feeling all firefighters know well. That moment when you are in the middle of a structure fire and suddenly a calm, peaceful feeling overwhelms you. You hear the fire crackling all around the smoke-filled room, but you can’t see it. Hearing a fire crackling is a sound that is imprinted on every firefighter’s mind. It roots us all in this crazy, unpredictable and exciting profession. CRACKYL will become the sound that firefighters listen to throughout their careers. Notorious for sitting around the kitchen and discussing their problems, concerns and victories, firefighters are always quick to offer advice on relationships, stress, financial problems, health, etc. But the truth, is they don’t always have the correct answers. They don’t know why we all fight about the same problems with our spouses, or why we don’t have any money left over from our paycheck, or why we can’t stand working with certain people. This publication aims to be the firefighter in the kitchen who does have the answers, providing accurate, practical, life-changing solutions to the problems we face.

Why the Spelling of CRACKYL

Although the name CRACKYL was chosen to reflect what a firefighter listens to, the unique spelling also has a specific meaning. The purpose of this magazine is to help create an immune system for firefighters. To give them the tools, strategies and strength so they don’t get sick or hurt, (mentally or physically), and continue to show up to work to do their job. The human immune system is made up of “Y” shaped proteins called antibodies which help fight off toxins in the body to keep us healthy. Our immune system is something built into the body, it can be bolstered but is a part of the greater organism — The same way the “Y” exists within the name CRACKYL. It is built right into the masthead as a part of the overall structure, reflecting the proactive health goals of the publication.

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