Iraq Vet Turned Firefighter Makes Ultimate Sacrifice Battling Boston Blaze
— Josh Brogadir (@joshbNECN) March 26, 2014
The other day my brother, a retired firefighter, posted some film on facebook of the recent 9 alarm fire in the Back Bay neighborhood in Boston that claimed the lives of two firefighters. The film reveals just how intense the fire was and how fierce it fought back against the engine and ladder companies that answered the call to duty there. You can see it reaching out of windows as if it was attempting to grab the firefighters and pull them in. This was as fierce a battle as any firefighter can face.
Yet they go to it willingly. They face the dangers with both skill and courage. And they do it to save lives but also to save property. There are few like these men and women. They do this job and take those risks on our behalf 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year, year in and year out.
This fire, though, took two of these brave men from us. Michael Kennedy and his brother firefighter, Lt. Edward J. Walsh, Jr. One of them, Michael Kennedy, was also a Marine Corps veteran who had fought in Iraq. He had served his country in the Marine Corps, and he served his community in the Boston Fire Department. That, apparently, was his nature. The firefighters’ local 718 President, Richard Paris, said just that of him at his funeral mass: “He served his country proudly as a Marine. He served his city proudly as a firefighter… The city of Boston has lost one of its bravest and a dedicated veteran.”