The National Fire Heritage Center (NFHC) has inducted the first group of fire service leaders into its National Fire & Emergency Services Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders. The group includes FireRescue magazine founder Chief James O. Page, who has long been considered “the father of modern EMS.” The other inductees:
- Ben Franklin: founder of Philadelphia’s Union Fire Company, the first volunteer fire company in the country
- John S. Damrell: first president of the National Association of Fire Engineers
- Patrick H. Raymond: first recorded black fire chief in the United States
- Charles T. Holloway: first chief engineer of the Baltimore City Fire Department; first fire commissioner of the Baltimore County Fire Department
- Charles E. Miles: first chief engineer of the Los Angeles Volunteer Fire Department
- Sveinn Eiràksson: fire chief for the U.S. Naval Air Station in Keflavik, Iceland (the first non-U.S. citizen appointed to command a U.S. military fire department)
- Francis (Frank) Brannigan: renowned author and educator in fire protection engineering disciplines
- Chief Peter J. Ganci Jr.: FDNY chief killed on Sept. 11, 2001
- William “Howie” McClennan: President Emeritus, IAFF
The announcement was made during the NFHC’s membership meeting on April 7, which was held in conjunction with the Congressional Fire Service Institute’s annual event in Washington, D.C.
Bill Killen, vice president of the NFHC and former president of the IAFC, says the purpose of the Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders is to recognize those “leaders of leaders” within the fire and emergency services for their extraordinary achievements and contributions at the national and international levels. Further, it seeks to draw attention to the NFHC’s mission and goals to help save important historical written work related to America’s fire service.
Jim Page in particular was a fitting inductee to the Hall of Legends, Legacies and Leaders, as he was considered a national historian and authority on EMS.
Photos and biographies of the 10 inductees will be posted on the NFHC website, www.nationalfireheritagecenter.com. Additional historical information about Page and his involvement in fire and EMS can be found at the UCLA Library James O. Page Collection (http://tinyurl.com/JamesOPage-UCLA).