North Carolina Firefighters Remember Their Fallen Comrades

The North Carolina Fallen Fire Fighters Foundation (NCFFF) held the fourth annual memorial service on May 1 and 2 in Raleigh.

The NCFFF began in 1999 with a group of North Carolina firefighters assembling to discuss the need to construct a memorial for the state that would pay tribute to the firefighters who died in the line of duty in the past and for the ones that would experience the ultimate sacrifice in the future.

To date 206 firefighters have been honored.

In 2008 North Carolina experienced eleven line of duty deaths. However, 12 firefighters were honored this year as a firefighter line of duty death was discovered from 1924.

Each year the NCFFF honor the surviving family members with a dinner on Friday night. The dinner was held across from the NCFFF memorial site at Raleigh Fire Station 1. Surviving families from the previous years gathered and were able to share the healing process with each other. Buncombe County honor guard was on hand to assist with the closing portion of Friday night's events with a silent posting of the colors at the candle light vigil.

Saturday's activities began early with a parade of honor. Fire apparatus and honor guards marched with the apparatus from department's who have experienced line of duty deaths. The parade was led by the North Carolina Pipes and Drums Band.

After the parade firefighters and families gathered near the memorial and enjoyed the music of the "Firehouse" quartet/string ensemble. At 1 p.m. families began the "Walk of Honor" as honor guards and firefighters from across the United States lined the Dawson Street entrance to the Fallen Firefighters Memorial.

The guest speaker was the honorable North Carolina Governor Beverly Perdue.

The NCFFF board of directors presented United States of America flags and roses to the families. The flags presented were the actual flags flown over the Fallen Firefighter Memorial which honored the fallen firefighters.

The 2008 Honored Firefighters are:

William T. Barnes
Death: Oct. 9, 1924
Agency: Hope/Greenville

Paul L. Ellington
Death: Jan. 1, 2008
Agency: Oregon Hill

Herman S. Jones
Death: Jan. 22, 2008
Agency: Raleigh

James E. Author
Death: Feb. 11, 2008
Agency: Cold Water

Victor A. Isler
Death: March 7, 2008
Agency: Salisbury

Justin E. Monroe
Death:March 7, 2008
Agency: Salisbury

Walter W. Michi
Death: March 16, 2008
Agency: Roanoke - Wildwood

Rufus E. Brinson, Jr.
Death: June 6, 2008
Agency: Reelsboro

Colin G. Thomas
Death: June 14, 2008
Agency: Verona

George F. Crocker
Death: June 22, 2008
Agency: Pine Level

Curtis L. Jennen
Death: Aug. 21, 2008
Agency: North Carolina Forestry Service

Carol I. Taylor
Death: Nov. 14, 2008
Agency: Goldsboro

To view the parade and memorial service visit the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters web site at www.ncfff.org

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