(WPRI) – Local firefighters are mourning the loss of two brothers, who tragically lost their lives in a dangerous and wind-driven fire in Boston’s Back Bay neighborhood.
Lt. Edward Walsh, 43, and Michael Kennedy, 33, died after becoming trapped in the basement while fighting the flames on Beacon Street on Wednesday afternoon.
President of the Providence Firefighters’ Union, Paul Doughty, said it is somber days where fellow men are lost that make firefighters across the country remember the dangers of the job.
“These things do happen, you can’t think about it too much,” he said, “You got to put it back in that place where you can still work, but it’s hard not to think about those things on days like today.”
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“Firefighters don’t realize, all over the nation, how close we dance with death every day,” said Providence Fire Chief Clarence Cunha, “We just take our job for granted and do the best we can and we don’t realize how close it is at every moment of the day.”
“Kind of the unwritten handshake among firefighters is we’ll try to do our best, and in the event that you fall, we’ll be there to honor you,” said Doughty.
Cunha said he can’t stop thinking about all the other firefighters in Boston who are trying to put out the Beacon Street fire, knowing two of their brothers were in the basement dying.
“Our hopes and prayers are with all of our brothers up there, all their families, and everyone involved in this. It’s just heartbreaking,” said Doughty.
The two victims along with several other firefighters were able to save residents trapped at the top of the four-story building as strong winds fueled the flames.
Memorial Fund for Fallen Firefighters
Donations will be accepted by mail by sending a check to:
Lieutenant Walsh – Firefighter Kennedy Memorial Fund
Boston Firefighters Credit Union
60 Hallet Street
Dorchester, MA 02124
Credit card donations will also be accepted on BOSFIRECU.COM