Memorial honors US firefighters who died in line of duty

This weekend, families of 148 fallen firefighters from around the country gathered at the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Memorial in Emmitsburg, Maryland, to honor their sacrifice.

Among activities at the weekend long event, families took part in a vigil in the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Chapel and a Candlelight Service on Saturday night.

An official memorial and Roll of Honor for the fallen was held Sunday morning, and included the names of several local heroes.

“The people of Frederick County, we feel your pain and your pride,” said County Executive Jan Gardner. “One of our own is among the heroes being honored today, Joshua Laird.”

Captain Josh Laird died in the line of duty on Aug. 11, 2021, while responding to a house fire in Ijamsville, Md. Laird served for 21 years and left behind a wife and two daughters.

“Josh was an amazing individual, said Chief Tom Coe of the Frederick County Fire department. “He was always looking to have a good time, but loved providing public service to the community.”

Others local heroes honored this weekend include: Volunteer Fire Chief Nicholas Finamore, 75, of the Prince George’s County Fire Department; Lieutenant William Sheffield, 60, of the Baltimore City Fire Department; and Volunteer Fire Chief Firefighter Brad Scott, 43, of the Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services.

All of the names will be etched into a plaque on the grounds of the memorial.

Troy Markel, chair of the NFFF, told family members that the foundation’s main mission is to support them.

“Our family programs are at the very heart of our mission, and we stand ready to support you,” he said.

See the 2022 Roll of Honor and learn more about the memorial at the foundation’s website.

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Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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