The unveiling of the Remembrance Wall and memorial sculpture honoring the six Worcester firefighters who died nine years ago tonight brought hundreds of firefighters, families and friends to spot where it happened.
- Worcester's Fire Chief Gerard Dio's Remembrance Speech
WORCESTER, Mass. -- The unveiling of the Remembrance Wall and memorial sculpture honoring the six Worcester firefighters who died nine years ago tonight brought hundreds of firefighters, families and friends to spot where it happened.
Brian Hanlon is the sculptor whose work pays tribute to the Worcester 6: Paul Brotherton, Joseph McGuirk, Timothy Jackson, Jeremiah Lucey, James Lyons and Thomas Spencer.
They died there heroically searching for two homeless people believed to be inside the Worcester Cold Storage Warehouse, but who'd escaped unbeknownst to firefighters. "To say the least, I'm overwhelmed today. I feel the weight of responsibility of making something that is fitting for the firefighters and fitting for the families," said Hanlon who was also commissioned for the Bob Cousy statue at The College of the Holy Cross.
The families cut the ribbon last month for the new fire station that stands behind the Remembrance Wall. Denise Brotherton, widow of one of the Worcester 6, said the moment was, "very bittersweet, very bittersweet. I spent eight days down here in the dead of winter waiting, waiting for word, just hoping Paul would be found. Ultimately, we got the worst news and now I think it's great that they've taken over the property and turned it into something positive."
Special Operations Chief Frank Diliddo said, "and we will go forward from here, being able to look at a tangible item, remembering them and bring other people here to say, 'this is what we mean when we say sacrifice, duty, honor. This is what our men did."
No tax dollars paid for the memorial, only funds raised only by firefighters including those who paid to take part in safety seminars begun after the Worcester Warehouse fire.
Republished with permission of WBZ-TV.