15 Mass. firefighters honored at ceremony
Included are two firefighters who died in the line of duty
By Lisa Hughes
WORCESTER, Mass. — They’re willing to risk their lives for us, and Tuesday firefighters from across Massachusetts were honored at the Firefighter of the Year Awards recognizing heroism, service and selflessness, including two men who made the ultimate sacrifice.
They filed into Mechanics Hall in Worcester as the bagpipes played. Thirty-one awards were given to 72 honorees. “Even as we sit here in this beautiful hall, firefighters around the Commonwealth are responding to incidents not knowing what they will encounter. They never know what they will face when the alarm sounds,” says state Fire Marshal Stephen Coan.
The highest recognition was the Medal of Honor, granted posthumously to Worcester firefighter Jon Davies and Peabody firefighter James Rice, both killed in the line of duty. “Thank you for the service, for the sacrifice you render and for the spirit in which you render it. We owe thanks as well to the families of our firefighters,” says Governor Deval Patrick.