Fallen firefighters memorial campaign underway in St. Catharines
By FFIC Staff
By FFIC Staff
Dec. 17, 2021, St. Catharines, Ont. — Friday marked the official launch of a partnership to develop a meaningful memorial recognizing the service of firefighters, including those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in giving their lives in service of their communities. City representatives, staff and members of the Fallen Firefighters Memorial Task Force (FFMTF) joined together to celebrate the formal launch of a donor campaign for the memorial.
The event took place adjacent to the City parkette at the corner of Carlisle Street and Race Street where the memorial will be erected. As the campaign kicks off, the City and FFMTF have unveiled designs for the memorial itself, as well as signage that will mark the location ahead of installation.
“This is a chance for the whole community to join together in this effort to recognize the sacrifice of our firefighters, these firefighters gave their lives, and now it is our turn to give back and honour them,” said FFMTF chair Barry Katzman in a press statement.
As part of the launch, St. Catharines Professional Firefighters Association Local 485 announced a significant donation in the amount of $50,000.
“Our members know when they put the uniform on that they may be put into harm’s way and they do it without hesitation to protect the public. We are pleased that this place of remembrance and reflection will be created for our fallen members of the St. Catharines Fire Services and proud to be a major donor,” said St. Catharines Professional Firefighters Association Local 485 president Ryan Madill in a news release.
The memorial will honour members of the St. Catharines Fire Services who died in the line of duty, along with the volunteer firefighters who died while serving in various St. Catharines wards and townships prior to 1919 then the St. Catharines Professional Firefighters Association Local 485 was formed.
“For our team this is both appreciated and humbling,” said Fire Chief Dave Upper, in a press release, adding, “it’s great to see the City and community taking these steps to recognize the risks our members take in protecting everyone’s safety and saving lives.”
The City first formed the FFMTF in the fall of 2019 to investigate options for a memorial including size, scope, location, design and funding. Since that time the members — including individuals from the public, political leadership and the fire services — have selected a location as well as awarded a contract to CFC Supply for the design and build of the memorial.
Now with the launch of a public donation campaign the project takes one step closer to completion. All funds for the memorial will be raised via private donations from individuals, businesses, organizations and fire services members.
Donations will contribute to the creation of a public work of art and memorial parkette honouring fallen firefighters. The task force will work with community partners making large donations to facilitate special recognition features including sponsor wall recognition, memorial benches, fundraising bricks for the parkette and customized donation features.