Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Firefighters Memorial Flag Legislation Reaches Governor's Desk

From the House Dems:

Legislation sponsored by State Representative Bill Heller (D-St. Petersburg) to honor firefighters who risk or lose their lives in the line of duty has reached the governor’s desk for his signature.

To ensure that firefighters protecting Floridians are never forgotten, Representative Heller sponsored House Bill 171 that creates the Florida Fallen Firefighters Memorial Flag, which pays tribute to the sacrifices of these brave men and women.

“This bill creates the official Florida Fallen Firefighters Memorial Flag honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving their communities,” said Representative Heller. “This flag is very special and is a tribute to the 144 brave men and women who have given their lives protecting Florida’s citizens.”

The flag will be displayed throughout the state, including memorial sites, funeral services for firefighters who have died in the line of duty, fire stations, and at the Florida State Fire College in Ocala.

The idea for the Fallen Firefighters Memorial Flag was originally brought to State Senator Charlie Justice by Oldsmar Fire Rescue Chief, Scott McGuff. A statewide call for designs generated hundreds of ideas. The official design was created by Firefighter Rick Weschler of the Palm Harbor Fire Rescue.

House Bill 171, which passed the House unanimously, was presented to Governor Charlie Crist on Friday, May 15. The governor has until May 30 to act on the legislation.

“The creation of this flag is a small measure of our appreciation to the firefighters who unselfishly put themselves in fatal situations for the wellbeing of our citizens,” said Representative Heller. “I am humbled to be a part of this effort to give recognition where it is due.”

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