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WISCONSIN RAPIDS (WAOW) -
Bagpipes and the American flag led the way to this years Final Alarm Ceremony at the Wisconsin Firefighter's Memorial. Family and departments of the fallen from all over the state came to remember those who died in the last year.
"It's an honor for us to honor them through this memorial," said Steve Quam, the memorial board president.
Fireman listed names of the fallen as far back as the 1800's and rang a bell each time a name was called.
Five more names were added to the memorial this year. One of them was Rothschild fire chief Steven Fritz, who passed away in December from a heart attack.
"It brings back the idea of what his job as fire chief was all about," said Dorothy Fritz, Fritz's mother.
Fritz's family and department came to honor him at the ceremony. His family was given a folded flag and a flower in his remembrance. His mother says the bond he had with his brothers is something she'll never forget.
"They draw strength from one another because I know the department really misses Steve just as we do," she said.
Other firefighters feel the same bond. Even though they may not know all of the fallen, they still feel that bond that brings them together.
"In the fire service we are a brotherhood,” Quam said. “We remember our fallen brothers we want them to remember them also."
A brotherhood that brings them here every year, to honor the fallen.
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