State Landmarks Lit Red Tonight in Honor of 24 Firefighters Who Passed This Past Year While Protecting the Public
Governor Kathy Hochul today acknowledged and honored the 24 firefighters have been added to the New York State Fallen Firefighters Memorial during an event at the Empire State Plaza to honor the memory and heroism of the brave New Yorkers who lost their lives while performing their duties in fire service.
"The names engraved on the New York State Fallen Firefighters Memorial will forever be remembered for self-sacrifice and dedication to community," Governor Hochul said. "New York is a better place because of their service, and I offer my sincerest condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of those who are no longer with us. We will never forget."
The names and details of the individuals added this year to the New York State Fallen Firefighter's Memorial Wall can be found here. This year's Fallen Firefighter Memorial Ceremony is honoring a total of 45 individuals, including 21 firefighters whose names were engraved on the wall in 2020, when there was no official ceremony due to COVID-19. With this year's addition, the Fallen Firefighters Memorial now honors 2,620 of New York's firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.
Governor Hochul issued two proclamations to honor the state's career and volunteer firefighters, marking Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2021, as Firefighter Appreciation Day and the week of Oct. 3 to 9, 2021, as Fire Prevention Week. Governor Hochul also directed that the state's landmarks be illuminated red this evening to honor the sacrifice of the firefighters whose names were added to the memorial and to recognize the service of all firefighters across the state.
Landmarks to be lit include:
- One World Trade Center
- Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge
- Kosciuszko Bridge
- The H. Carl McCall SUNY Building
- State Education Building
- Alfred E. Smith State Office Building
- State Fairgrounds - Main Gate & Expo Center
- Niagara Falls
- The "Franklin D. Roosevelt" Mid-Hudson Bridge
- Grand Central Terminal - Pershing Square Viaduct
- Albany International Airport Gateway
- The Lake Placid Olympic Jumping Complex
- MTA LIRR - East End Gateway at Penn Station
The names engraved on the New York State Fallen Firefighters Memorial will forever be remembered for self-sacrifice and dedication to community.
The Fallen Firefighters Memorial, dedicated in 1998, honors the memory and valor of New York's fallen firefighters at the memorial each year. The memorial also pays tribute to more than 100,000 New York State active career and volunteer firefighters who put their lives on the line every day in the name of public safety.
During Fire Prevention Week, the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control, within the State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, partners with local fire departments, fire service organizations, school districts, civic groups, and the National Fire Protection Association to provide information and programs to the public about the importance of fire safety awareness.
In 2019, fire departments across the state responded to approximately 1,621,000 incidents, or an average of 4,441 incidents per day, 185 incidents per hour and three incidents every minute.
State Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Patrick A. Murphy said, "We are proud to honor these brave New Yorkers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the fire service. It is important to pay tribute to their memory and ensure they are never forgotten. May God bless our fallen firefighters, their friends and families, and those who still risk their lives each day in the fire service to protect the people of New York State."
Acting State Fire Administrator James Cable said, "Today, we honor and remember the service of our fellow firefighters who are no longer with us. As we recently observed the twentieth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and those we lost that day, it is important we also recognize that many of those being honored today were recently lost as a direct result of their participation in the rescue and recovery efforts in response to those attacks."
John P. Farrell Jr., President of the Firemen's Association of the State of New York said, "This year, we honor 45 fallen firefighters, including 21 firefighters whose names were engraved on the wall in 2020. The wall symbolizes their unwavering dedication in protecting the citizens of New York. Their names on the wall remind us to honor their sacrifice by being the best firefighters we can be."
Robert R. Kloepfer Jr., President of the New York State Association of Fire Chiefs said, "Today we join our fire service colleagues and elected officials in honoring the 45 fallen firefighters who died selflessly serving their communities to protect New Yorkers. We will forever remember these individuals and honor their spirit, commitment and dedication to public safety."
Bill Kennedy, President of the County Fire Coordinators' Association of the State of New York said, "Today, we honor those in the fire service who've made the ultimate sacrifice. Saying thank you is not worthy of the sacrifice but, in memorializing their legacy, we continue to show our never-ending appreciation for these brave New Yorkers who dedicated their lives to being firefighters."
Sam Fresina President of the New York State Professional Fire Fighters Association said, "Every time we lose another firefighter, it is a great loss to our community. It is the loss of a neighbor, a friend, a comrade, and it leaves a void in the heart of our family. When we gather at the memorial site we share our grief, but coming together for this tribute is also part of the healing process. As Governor Hochul said today ‘Grief is the price we pay for love.’ We can only hope that, in the future, there will be a year when we gather here to remember the fallen, but with no new names added to the memorial.”
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