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A South Dakota hero honored at a national memorial

When fires burn across the nation, it takes thousands of firefighters to keep us safe but not everyone makes it home safely. The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation held a memorial Sunday honoring those who died in the line of duty.
Published: Oct. 3, 2021 at 1:00 PM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - First responders put their life on the line every day and some of those lives are sacrificed. 87 firefighters died in the line of duty in 2020 and 82 in 2019..

“It is so rewarding that we are helping these families after they’ve had the worst possible day in their life by losing their firefighter,” said Ron Siarnicki, executive director of the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation.

Sunday morning, the nation honored 215 firefighters who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty. The foundation held its 40th Annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

The weekend started with a Candlelight Service for the families of America’s fallen firefighters. A plaque with all 215 fallen heroes honored this year is now displayed at the National Memorial.

“Our mission is to ensure that those firefighters who make the ultimate sacrifice are never forgotten and their families are given the opportunity to put the pieces back together after the tragic loss of their loved one,” said Siarnicki.

One South Dakota hero was honored at the memorial, Firefighter Dwain Hudson, of the Argyle volunteer fire department.

“We want to make sure that we honor every firefighter who makes that supreme sacrifice and that includes career, volunteer, wildland, military, it’s any firefighter out there who dies in the line of duty,” said Siarnicki.

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