2023 National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend to honor 144
The organization is hosting public and private events in person and is offering ways to participate from anywhere
By Leila Merrill
EMMITSBURG, Md. — The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation is preparing to host the 42nd National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend this Saturday and Sunday in Emmitsburg, Maryland.
This year’s national tribute will honor 79 firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2022 and 65 firefighters who died in previous years.
Information about each of the 144 firefighters being honored is included in the 2023 Roll of Honor.
“National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend is a time for our nation to pause and reflect on the heroic efforts and selfless service of the fallen firefighters we are honoring this year. We will always remember the bravery, commitment, and sacrifices of each of these 144 heroes,” Troy Markel, board chair of the NFFF, said.
During Memorial Weekend, two events will be open to the public at the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Park on the grounds of the National Emergency Training Center.
The National Fallen Firefighters Candlelight Service is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. ET on Saturday and will be hosted by Captain Garon Mosby of the St. Louis Fire Department.
The National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service is at 10 a.m. ET on Sunday and will be hosted by journalist Hillary Howard.
U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas is scheduled to address the thousands of attendees at the Memorial Service on Sunday. The NFFF will livestream both events on the NFFF’s website, YouTube channel, and Facebook page.
There are additional events during Memorial Weekend offered exclusively for the families and fire departments of honored firefighters, including small-group sessions.
Those not attending Memorial Weekend in person can also pay tribute to this year’s honored firefighters. The public can participate in Light the Night for Fallen Firefighters on Thursday through Sunday by lighting their homes, businesses, landmarks or fire departments with red lights.
The U.S. flag will be lowered to half-staff at all federal buildings on Sunday. The public is encouraged to also lower their flags that day to recognize the people who made the ultimate sacrifice.
Memorial Weekend is supported by individual and corporate donors, a grant from the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and in partnership with the U.S. Fire Administration, which is part of the Department of Homeland Security.
The NFFF will provide live satellite feeds courtesy of VISTA Worldlink, Comcast Beltway, and INTELSAT.
On social media, people are encouraged to use the hashtag #FireHero2023.