Last Updated on February 23, 2022 by Maggie Looker
Homes for Heroes Foundation is off to a good start in 2022, granting $10,000 to the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation. This grant is part of the Homes for Heroes Foundation’s circle of giving, providing assistance for heroes in dire need across the country.
Homes for Heroes Outreach Coordinator, Jay Flynn, talks to Rick Flemming, President, North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation and presented him with the Foundation Check.
You can watch their full interview below and read their interview.
Founding the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation
In 2000, the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation was established when firefighters around North Carolina decided they were going to do something for the North Carolina fallen firefighters. It took them 6 years before it could come to fruition. There were challenges between fundraising and working with the state to establish Nash Square as the memorial site. In 2006, North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation were finally able to dedicate their memorial.
“The mission is to provide assistance to families and fire departments that have lost their lives in the line of duty.” Rick Flemming says of the organization. “Not only that, but we help retirees and assist in their funerals as well. We also assist anybody else, it doesn’t necessary have to be a retiree or [Line of Duty Death], it can be any assistance they need.”
For example, if a station has a tough call, NCFFF can arrange for a chaplain to come to that station. They have large coordination network with local support teams.
Honoring the Fallen
In addition to providing assistance to North Carolina firefighters, the NCFFF also honors those who are no longer with us.
“Every year, the first Saturday in May, we have a fire truck parade to honor those who have gave the ultimate sacrifice. In that memorial service, we unveil the inductees for that year. The families get to see their loved ones on that granite tablet. Once they’re an inductee to that memorial site, they’re welcome to come back each year, and we encourage them to come back every year. Our chaplain, Dana, tells them they’re a part of a family no one wants to be a part of, but they’re always welcome in this family.”
Receiving a Crucial Grant
The effects of COVID-19 have been felt throughout the NCFFF. Fundraising and donations have slowed during the past two years. The organization also put on events and conferences like weekend fire schools that have sponsors. However, the biggest fundraising event for NCFFF is the North Carolina State Fair, where they sell branded merchandise. For the past two years, they were unable to attend as the Fair was cancelled.
The memorial in Nash Square is now at a place where it needs to be expanded. Unfortunately, NCFFF has used all the spaces for names that the memorial can handle. The grant from the Homes for Heroes Foundation will go towards expanding the memorial.
The next memorial service will be on May 7, 2022, and all are welcome to attend. You can also help out by visiting their website, www.NCFFF.org.