The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) headquarters in Massachusetts looks a little different this week as it is lit in red as part of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) Light the Night for Fallen Firefighters. The building will remain red from dusk to dawn through this Sunday, the beginning of Fire Prevention Week, to honor those firefighters who have died in the line of duty. NFFF is inviting individuals, communities, organizations, and landmarks to make this symbolic gesture to demonstrate that we remember our nation’s heroes and appreciate their sacrifice.
Each year NFFF, which was created in 1992 to lead the national efforts for fallen firefighters, sponsors the NFFF Memorial Weekend in Emmitsburg for those firefighters who died in the line of duty the previous year. It is a fitting and moving tribute that honors those lost and supports their families as they move on with their lives. That would have been this weekend.
Unfortunately, like so many other things, the physical event has been postponed; but there are a number of activities taking place in addition to Light the Night. A live virtual production entitled America’s Tribute to Fallen Firefighters will premiere on Sunday at 10 am. It can be viewed on the NFFF home page and social media channels. Fire departments and others are also encouraged to participate in Bells Across America, ringing bells shortly before 10 am on Sunday. The bell holds special significance in the fire service, sounded when a firefighter dies in the line of duty.
This year 82 firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2019 and 21 firefighters who died in previous years will be recognized. Their families will participate in a full weekend of activities in 2021.
You can find out more at firehero.org.
NFPA is proud to participate in this observance. We are equally proud, as an organization, for the role we play in reducing loss. Our staff, volunteers, and all those with whom we work, are devoted to making the world a safer place for everyone, including our first responders.