Hundreds of people many family members of Minnesota firefighters who died while on duty gathered at the Nike Zoom Pegasus 32 Mens
But, the foundation still got it done. And there were key elements to getting the memorial dedicated, Esbensen said.
Firefighters line up near the Minnesota Fallen Firefighter Memorial Sunday, Sept. 30, holding a flag that has flown over the state capitol. Each family of a fallen firefighter received a flag during the dedication ceremony on Sunday. (Photo by Paul Groessel Sun Newspapers)
When they started fundraising and planning efforts, they knew the effort must be "by firefighters, for firefighters," he said. If it was going to happen, they had to get firefighters statewide involved. And, they did get involved.
Esbensen, Eden Prairie's fire chief, has been a main driver in the fundraising and awareness efforts for about two years.
"We need to understand this is not for us," Esbensen said. "This is for the survivors. Most importantly, this is for the families."
Fundraising was organized through the Minnesota Fire Service Foundation, and Esbensen, fellow firefighters and other contributors helped raise money for the $600,000 goal.
The solemn ceremony included bell ringing, played as family members arrive, for those firefighters who have died; speeches from memorial organizers and elected officials; the statue unveiling; and the presentation of flags that had flown over the capitol, one given to each family of a firefighter who has died.
families took their seats around the memorial, organizers and elected officials addressed the crowd. Some of those speakers included Gov. Mark Dayton, Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Dennis Compton, chairman of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.
But, the foundation is still seeking donations, Bloomington Fire Chief Ulie Seal said two days before the ceremony. Organizers are $50,000 60,000 short of where they need to be, he said, since project costs included moving the statue from the airport, repairing it and updating it.
"What began 25 years ago as a dream is now a reality," said Minnesota Fallen Firefighter Chairman George Esbensen.
But, Compton said, the memorial serves as a reflection of the duty and honor instilled in firefighters' lives, and when given, they will not be taken for granted or forgotten.
The memorial a housing with multiple, narrow cylindrical columns that surrounded a firefighter holding a child and descending a ladder will hold the names of the 206 firefighters Nike Kyrie New
Firefighters are not thanked enough for risking their lives "day and night, year after year. Life Nike Lebron Ambassador 5 can truly be unfair, especially to the families of the best and the bravest," he said.
who have died in Minnesota since 1881.
Firefighter memorial finally dedicated at the state capitol
Dayton recognized the importance of that meaning.
The crowd and ceremony were the amalgamation of recent fundraising efforts and a desire of some in the firefighting community to expand the firefighter memorial that was dedicated at Minneapolis St. Paul Airport in 1987.
Organizers also had to make a strong presence within "the target audience," he said. He and others traveled across the state, visiting fire stations and crews to talk about the memorial and raise money. Contributions ranged from $1 to $25,000, Esbensen said.
They had to get thoughtful, involved supporters, such as memorial designer, firm Leo A Daly and other businesses that contributed, he said.
state capitol Sunday, Sept. 30, to dedicate the Minnesota Fallen Firefighter Memorial.
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