Byron’s first full-time female firefighter says she’s ready to take on challenge

BYRON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – The newest firefighter in Byron says she’s ready to take on any challenge that comes her way.

Shelby Browning is the first full-time female firefighter the department has ever had. 

Underneath all of her firefighting gear, is woman who’s out to prove them wrong. 
20-year-old Shelby Browning is working full-time at something her brother said couldn’t be done. 
“When I’m here, I kind of have to prove myself, but I think the guys enjoy my company. They know that I work hard for my position,” Browning said. 
She’s already getting the respect of her peers. 
“She’s kind of flowed into the one of the guys type deal. She’s pretty good to work with,” Captain Josh Briley said. 
Browning was a volunteer firefighter for last two years.
She says working alongside an all male crew doesn’t bother her at all, but when its time to strap on the gear, there are some challenges.
“All of the physical work around here is upper body, and core strength, and so I’m really having to work on my physical strength and just getting stronger,” Browning said. 
Working on physical strength is one thing….Browning thinks her mental toughness is what got her through the strenous tests to become full-time. 
Fire Chief J.D. Mosby says although there have been female volunteers firefighters before, Browning is a trailblazer. 
“She’s an incredible role model for women, not only in our community but the broader community of Georgia as well. She follows in the footsteps of many good women firefighters that have gone before her, many of which are now chiefs,” Mosby said. 
In the end, Browning isn’t after the attention or about being recognized, she just wants to help people and save their lives. 

Browning, who’s also in school to become a veterinarian, says she’s also looking forward to the opportunity to teach kids in school about fire safety. 

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