Firefighters Remember Fallen Comrades - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

10/01/04

Firefighters Remember Fallen Comrades

The latest in fire fighting movies offers a look at the dangers of the job.

However, most firefighters don't need films like the new "Ladder 49" to remind them of the risks they take every time they battle a blaze.

The film stars John Travolta and Joaquin Phoenix as a pair of veteran firefighters.

A series of events is planned for this weekend in Washington D-C to pay tribute to firefighters from around the country who died in the line of duty.

For two veteran firefighters here in South Mississippi, it's also a time to remember two fallen comrades.

"I only worked with him a few times swapped times and stuff. He was a mentor, a great guy. He taught me a lot," said firefighter Eddie Horns by

It was 18 years ago this month Kurt Jacques and Carl O hr died doing a job they loved.

The two were battling a blaze in an old house on Reynolds Street in Biloxi.

It would be their last shift together during a time when fire fighting was very different.

"It was the old days you know, you grabbed the hose and ran yeah, you fought the fire, you chased it and you fought it. It's not like that anymore," said firefighter Joe Boney.

Today, firefighters work more as a team to watch out for one another, under a system called incident command.

"It's a system we use in the fire service to keep accountability of our people on a fire scene or an emergency situation and that was coming' out at the time they were killed," said Boney.

Eddie Hornsby was on the shift that got called in to relieve Jacquet and Ohr's co-workers.

He helped remove his friends' bodies from the burned out building.

"That was a hard thing to do because the shift that was on they were on a down mode then...all they could do is send them home and we had to pick up the pieces," said Hornsby.

"On the 20th of October which is the anniversary of their death I know a lot of us gather to remember 'em in our own way and to remember all the firefighters," said Boney

October is fire prevention month, a time to educate the public about fire safety, and to keep the memories of fallen heroes like Kurt Jacquet and Carl Ohr alive.

107 firefighters died on the job last year, according to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.

By: Marcia Hill

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