Members of the Federal Government as well as firefighters from across the country gathered in Regina last Friday for the announcement of The Firefighters National Memorial Day.
"The Firefighters National Memorial Day was actually started way back in 2004," explained Estevan's Fire Chief and Director of the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs, Dale Feser. "The Canadian Fallen Firefighters Foundation actually started hosting our own ceremonies out there. It's held the second Sunday of September every year."
"As a director for the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs, I was invited by the Minister of Public Safety and Preparedness, Ralph Goodale, who made the announcement at Regina Fire Department Station No. 5. They hosted the announcement. This is making sure that the Federal Government is going to recognize this day and from this point on, it will be a national memorial day."
This means that the flags on all Federal buildings will fly their flags at hast mast to honour those lives that have been lost.
"It is indeed is a huge honour and respect to those who have given the ultimate sacrifice."
He also adds that the importance of the day is to remember the men and women who have died in the line of duty since 1848.
"Since that time there's been over 1,300 firefighters who have paid the ultimate sacrifice. It's a way of remembering these individuals and their contributions to their communities across Canada and ensure their memory is never forgotten."
He explains that the family can make an application to have the name of a fallen firefighter to be engraved on the wall in Ottawa and then are flown to Ottawa and participate in a ceremony.
"I was in attendance two year ago. The Saskatchewan Fire Service hosted the Canadian Fallen Firefighters memorial two years ago. It's almost a Mecca for people involved in the fire community. There's a beautiful statue of a firefighter towards the wall and the statue of the firefighter is actually made of brass fittings that have been donated from various fire departments right across Canada. All those fittings were then melted down and poured and cast into the firefighter statue."
"I would very much like to thank Fire Chief Lane Jackson and the City of Regina Fire Protective Services for hosting this very important announcement. There were delegates from the Canadian Fallen Firefighters Association, The Canadian Association of Fire Chiefs, the Saskatchewan Association of Fire Chiefs, The Saskatchewan Volunteer Firefighters Association and it was an honour to be invited and to attend this event for such an important announcement."