To ensure that every Nebraska line of duty death is remembered with a dignified memorial, regardless of religious, political, or departmental affiliation.
In May 2001, Grand Island Professional Firefighters Local 647 hosted an appreciation barbecue and first annual fire school games at the Nebraska State Fire School. Following the event, the idea of a state-wide Firefighter/Rescue memorial was introduced at a meeting. Then came September 11, 2001, on which 343 fellow emergency workers died in a single day. At that point, Local 647 began planning for the memorial.
In response to 9/11, Grand Island firefighters raised $50,000 for the affected fire, EMS, and police families. As a gift for this donation, a piece of the NYC World Trade Center steel was presented to Grand Island Firefighters. On September 11, 2002 a 1500 pound column from the World Trade Center Steel was delivered to Grand Island by the Grand Island Express trucking company and displayed at City Hall and the Nebraska Veterans Home. The piece of steel will be incorporated into the memorial wall.
The Grand Island Firefighters teamed up with the Nebraska Serious Injury & Line-Of-Duty Death Response Team to raise the money needed to build this memorial that will allow EVERY Firefighter and EMS personnel that dies in the line-of-duty to honored with their name on the wall. A brick walk of honor and a Firefighter’s park will also be incorporated into this plan for the public to enjoy.
This memorial will serve as the home of an annual Nebraska Fire & Rescue Memorial service where Firefighters and EMS personnel can gather to honor & remember their fallen Brothers & Sisters.
All Line-Of-Duty Deaths since 2001 will have an individual brass plaque displaying their name on the wall. Line-Of-Duty Deaths occurring before 2001 will have their names on plaques by years.
The Nebraska Law Enforcement Memorial is currently being built on the same property as the Nebraska Fire & Rescue Memorial. Completion of the Law Enforcement Memorial is scheduled for the Spring 2009.
The Action Plan
Grand Island Firefighters are proposing to build a memorial wall for an approximate cost of $300,000. The memorial will be 50 feet long with approximately 10 foot wing walls on each side, and at a height of 15 feet. A brick Maltese Cross will be placed in front of the wall. Brick pavers will be available to purchase in memory of retired or non line of duty deaths of any emergency worker.
The World Trade Center Steel will be incorporated into this wall and displayed in a prominent, protected and highly visible area. At this time we are planning to have a water feature, such as a brass hydrant with a leaking valve cap. Also a city firefighter park is incorporated into this plan for the public to enjoy. Signage is planned for placement at Interstate 80 to advertise this memorial.
This memorial will be an excellent place to hold an annual Memorial Service in conjunction with the yearly Nebraska Fire School. All Line Of Duty Deaths (LODD) since 2001 will have an individual brass plaque displayed on this wall. LODD occurring before 2001 will have their names on plaques by years. Ground breaking is planned for May 19, 2006 and will kick-off a fund raising campaign.
Partial Listings of LODD since 2001
- 343 NYC Emergency Personnel, 9/11/2001
- Rick Cuba, Lincoln NE Fire 3/13/2002
- Bernie Schutte, Palisade NE 3/20/2002
- Lori Schrempe, Norfolk NE 6/6/2002
- Phillip Herring, Norfolk NE 6/6/2002
- Patrick Scollard, Norfolk NE 6/21/2002
- Floyd Miller, Lincoln NE Fire 8/8/2002
- Ron Holmes, North Platte NE Fire 8/6/2003
- Ricky Blodgett, Omaha NE Fire 9/14/2003
- Bobby Heminger, Wood River NE Fire 2/15/2004
- Kenny Woitalewicz, Wood River NE Fire 2/17/2004
YES, I would like to assist in raising donations for the NEBRASKA FIRE AND RESCUE MEMORIAL.
I understand that all funds collected must be in check form and made out to the Nebraska Fire and Rescue Memorial Foundation. I also understand that 100% of the funds collected will go toward this memorial.
Donations can be made to:
Home Federal Bank
Nebraska Fire and Rescue Memorial
3419 West State street
Grand Island, Nebraska. 68803
For more information you can contact