North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Memorial, Raleigh
The monument is a bronze statue of four life-size firefighters on a large granite base. One of the firefighters is trapped beneath a steel beam; the three others are in the process of rescuing him. The sculpture is inscribed with the names of the state’s fallen firefighters. Originally, the plaques had 112 names of firefighters who died in the line of duty since 1902. More have been added as other firefighters died within the state. Firefighters who died of heart attacks or vehicle wrecks are included on the monument.
Images: Front View | Right View | Back View | Figure 1 (Fallen firefighter) | Figure 2 (Firefighter holding head) | Figure 3 (Firefighter with hose) | Figure 4 (Firefighter with a steel beam)
Inscription on plaque:
NORTH CAROLINA FALLEN / FIREFIGHTERS MEMORIAL / "HEROISM AND SACRIFICE" / -CARL W. REGUTTI, SCULPTOR / NORTH CAROLINA / FALLEN FIREFIGHTERS / FOUNDATION / MAY 6, 2006
North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation
May 6, 2006
35.777700 , -78.642900 View in Geobrowse
"Closings Saturday for Firefighter Honor," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 4, 2006
"Firefighter Memorial to Be Built in Raleigh's Nash Square," WRAL.com, February 18, 2003, (accessed January 11, 2012) Link
"Memorial to Honor State's Firefighters," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), September 27, 2005
"Memorial. The Memorial Site Was Dedicated in May 2006." North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation, (accessed February 18, 2020) Link
"Parade Marks Firefighters Memorial," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 6, 2006
"Seven Fallen Firefighters Honored at Memorial," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), May 1, 2010
Laibe, Constance. "Statue Unveiled in Nash Square," The News and Observer (Raleigh, NC), September 25, 1985
Bronze, granite, slate
North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation raised the funds (entirely privately funded). Many North Carolina fire-departments raised funds. Additionally major donors included a Country Club, Insurance Companies, and the Jack Daniel's Distillery.
During the May 6, 2006 unveiling ceremonies, Kathy Guyer-Martin, the widow of a fallen firefighter, gave remarks; a prayer was offered by the Reverend J. George Reed.
The monument was created in order to honor firefighters who have lost their lives. The North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation began raising funds to build a memorial in 2000 by working with Carl Regutti in creating wall relief sculptures to sell in mass quantities.
The monument caused some concern from the Raleigh Arts Commission and members of the community due to the possibility of losing the fluidity of Nash Square with the addition of such a large memorial. Members of the Commission opposed the monument because the felt the sculpture was "too literal and melodramatic, even schmaltzy," according to the Raleigh News and Observer. One local gallery owner decried the monument, claiming "It is a monster. It is not creative. It does not require any imagination at all. It is not like the Vietnam Memorial (in Washington, D.C.), that just washes over you." Nevertheless, the memorial was eventually approved and built in 2004.
The monument is intended to be viewed from any angle, with at least one firefighter's face visible from all viewpoints. The City of Raleigh Employee Memorial honoring firefighters, police officers and sanitation workers who lost there lives while serving the City of Raleigh is located in a near proximity in Nash Square adjacent to the West Hargett St.
The monument is located in the center of Nash Square with a surrounding walkway. The circular walkway in the center of the square is surrounded by greenery and the monument is located on flat terrain.
Annual memorials are held each year on the first Saturday in May. Names of North Carolina firefighters who passed are annually added to the plaques.
The monument was envisioned by the North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Foundation. The Raleigh Arts Commission initially voted against allowing it to be placed in Nash Square early in 2003; the monument was later approved and constructed.