Through private donations, the Foundation provides lodging and meals for immediate next-of-kin of firefighters being honored and assists with travel expenses. This allows family members to participate in the public tributes, and in Family Day sessions conducted by trained grief counselors.
Anyone whose firefighter was previously honored at the National Memorial is also welcome to attend the Memorial Weekend. There are events planned for our returning survivors and many opportunities to volunteer. Returning survivors are the best source of support for family members attending the Memorial Weekend for the first time.
We recognize that firefighters who lose a fellow firefighter in the line of duty are survivors, too. We want you to be part of the weekend activities. You have the opportunity to serve as a Fire Service Escort to the family of your fallen firefighter.
Family Escorts represent the fire service family and create a lasting impression. The escorts who have accompanied families to weekend events in the past describe it as an unforgettable experience. Families also tell us how much it means to them to have a member of their loved one's department escort them during the Weekend.
Families arrive at the Memorial and are escorted through a "Sea of Blue" leading to the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial. Uniformed fire service personnel line the Walk of Honor® in honor and support of our new families.
The Memorial Weekend is a time for sharing and healing for the families of our fallen firefighters. Representatives from Honor Guard and Pipe Band Units participate as part of this solemn tribute and commemoration of your loved ones. Many families have told us how much they appreciate the honor bestowed upon their loved ones at the National Tribute.