They put their lives on the line for us every day. It's a risk that is being remembered on this day, for firefighters who went in to battle and never came home. The city of Savannah has lost a total of 25 firefighters, starting back in 1865. The last fallen hero killed while on duty was in 1991.
Now all their names are on a memorial plaque in front of the city of Savannah Fire Department Headquarters on Oglethorpe Avenue. Each name was read out loud and a rose placed on the memorial monument. The bell, affectionately known as "Big Duke" tolled for each one of them. It's an acknowledgement of all these firefighters have given, and would give, if called to duty again. "It's one of the worst nightmares for a fire chief to lose a firefighter, even in combat; however, these individuals are brave and courageous, and would do it again if given another chance,"said Savannah Fire Chief Paul Taylor.
Many firefighters say Sunday's ceremony has become all the more memorable in recent years because of the September Eleventh attacks. "We've give a lot of importance to Nine Eleven.but its also important to come back to our hometown and talk about the people who served here," said rookie firefighter, Sara Marsh.
The firefighters will never get a second chance to save lives, but it's a risk today's fire officials embrace with open arms."We do it because we love our fellow man and we love this job," exclaimed Savannah Fire Assistant Fire Chief, Steve Miller.
Chief Taylor agreed. "When things get too tough for everybody else, that's when firefighters go to work. We don't do it for the pay.we do it because we are our brothers keepers."
Even on this special day, a siren wails in the air, reminding us a firefighter's work is never done.