Memorial proposed for Hamilton firefighters

A memorial to honour fallen firefighters in the city of Hamilton is being proposed for Gage Park.The project would cost just under $1 million, but will help remember the dozens of firefighters who have been killed in the line of duty.Fighting fires is a dangerous job.stan double“Sixty professional firefighters have passed away as a result of their occupation as firefighters in the city of Hamilton.”Every year members of the Hamilton Professional Firefighters Association go to the States to honour their fallen members. A firefighter hasn’t died in a fire in Hamilton in at least 30 years, but many have developed deadly cancers from breathing in harmful smoke.Stan Double of the Hamilton Professional Firefighters Association says a memorial in the city would be welcome, “Every year we travel to Colorado to memorialize those individuals, and it would be a pleasure to have a memorial in the city of Hamilton so we can do that in our own home town.”It’s “in the works.”Next week the public works committee will vote whether to approve plans for the $900,000 memorial in Gage Park.Cynthia Graham from the city of Hamilton says, “As staff that’s the location we’re recommending at this point, ultimately it’s up to committee and council to give us direction for the location.”The proposed memorial would be built in the northeast corner of Gage Park near the Children’s Museum. City staff looked at other parks throughout Hamilton but decided this location worked the best.“It’ll be generally be a flat plaza space with a vertical memorial wall where the names will be etched and there will also be a central public art figure to memorialize the fallen firefighters.”One of the fallen firefighters who will be honoured will be Captain Bob Shaw.“Bob Shaw was a firefighter and captain with the Hamilton fire department, in the fallout of the Plastimet fire of 1997, Bob succumbed to illnesses related to his occupation as a firefighter in the Plastimet fire.”This isn’t a done deal, it still needs to be approved by the committee next Thursday.The plans call for the memorial to use the gardens and outline that is already in place at the park.