Firefighters share support for Ukrainian fire crews on front lines of military action
Social media posts highlight the challenges faced by Ukrainian fire crews 'standing tall, doing their job' during Russian invasion
By FireRescue1 Staff
KYIV, Ukraine — Russia launched an invasion of Ukraine last week, striking air bases and military infrastructure in at least two dozen cities across the country.
As airstrikes have left dozens dead and buildings in ruins, Ukrainian fire crews are "standing tall doing their jobs" on the front lines, as one firefighter noted.
Fellow firefighters have taken to social media to show their support for their brother and sister firefighters facing unthinkable challenges trying to protect their citizens.
The @IAFFNewsDesk proudly stands with the people of Ukraine, including the brave Ukrainian firefighters who despite the challenges; continue to serve their communities without hesitation.#PrayForUkraine #UnitedWithUkraine pic.twitter.com/TwCSFtRT6K— Edward Kelly IAFF General President (@IAFFPresident) March 2, 2022
When you think your challenged by todays mandates, decisions and outcomes, please take just a moment and reflect on your last run to a structure fire due to a missile strike. My thoughts are with our fellow firefighters and their challenges today and the days to come in #Ukraine pic.twitter.com/5R4DR24Bj8— Andrew L Mitton (@AndrewLMitton) February 24, 2022
Something to think about. There are firefighters in Ukraine trying to protect their communities from a military invasion. I don’t know foreign affairs but I know firefighters. These are some ballsy mofos out there standing tall doing their job. Keep a good thought for them, ok? pic.twitter.com/7AtqSHA96D— Ray Clothier (@RayClothier56) February 25, 2022
When I was in Ukraine couple of years ago to train firefighters there, I never thought that they will need to use their newly acquired skills in these circumstances.— Michal Stachowicz (@stackofire) February 24, 2022
Stay strong brothers and sisters. https://t.co/7jmQP7JG8D pic.twitter.com/mWZLZvBLB7
I wanted to share this from one of our brother firefighters in the Ukraine pic.twitter.com/EFvyunjUGl— Bill Gaughan (@BillGaughan) February 24, 2022
I watch the escalating situation in Ukraine 🇺🇦 with despair and deep sadness. It is images such as this one that remind us that this is not a conflict limited to soldiers, tanks and missiles. It has a huge and tragic impact on the civilian population- including the Firefighters😔 pic.twitter.com/6yTBoVNJ1V— Dave Walton (@WYFRSDaveWalton) February 24, 2022
In the chaos of the Ukraine invasion, there are firefighters who have remained in the city, not to engage in battle, but to protect lives and property. pic.twitter.com/HuSU0bT91G— Chad Harley (@chadxmerch) February 25, 2022
News outlets are capturing the scenes facing Ukrainian fire crews:
Footage released by Ukraine Emergency Services shows firefighters battling a blaze in a house they say was caused by shelling in the region, as the conflict with Russia continues to escalate. https://t.co/GJEP72yEJs pic.twitter.com/QWaSu3a9Dp— ABC News (@ABC) February 23, 2022
“In Peace, Firefighters, in War, Soldiers”
A firefighter's view of crews' bravery during Russia's invasion of Ukraine
By Robert Rielage
The phrase “In peace, firefighters – in war, soldiers” is attributed to the Zouaves, a group of firefighters who enlisted together, primarily from the New York area, during the Civil War. They distinguished themselves with colorful uniforms on the battlefield to let everyone know they were first and foremost firefighters.
As an Air Force veteran and one who served overseas in wartime, I have been looking with great interest at the updates and videos from the cities in Ukraine. It has struck me in the early going how our brother and sister firefighters in Ukraine have kept that spirit exemplified by the Zouaves.
Many videos show scenes where firefighters are attempting to extinguish fires or rescuing victims from the damage caused by artillery, rockets and missiles in many of the larger cities, including Kyiv.
Several scenes show firefighters on the landing of a multi-family dwelling attempting to enter an apartment to search and extinguish an interior fire as thick smoke pours out of the doorway. Others show an exterior attack from a ladder truck to the top floor and roof of a multi-story structure. And a third shows them attempting to search for victims at the remains of a structure that collapsed undoubtedly caused by explosions at or near this building.
We need to acknowledge the bravery and professionalism of our counterparts, and realize their dedication did not stop when the bullets began to fly. They are no less defending their country and innocent citizens, as their friends and neighbors who have taken up arms in defense of their country.
“In peace, firefighters – in war, soldiers” is still true today.
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