Two firefighters who died in West Penn Twp. fire among those to be honored at Memorial Weekend
May 3—The two men who lost their lives fighting a fire in West Penn Twp. in December 2022 will be honored this weekend alongside 144 firefighters who died in the line of duty.
The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation will hold the 42nd National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend on Saturday and Sunday in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Each firefighter's name will be inscribed on a bronze plaque and become a permanent fixture of the national memorial.
Among the names will be firefighter Marvin Gruber, 59, and Assistant Chief Zachary Paris, 36, of Community Fire Company in New Tripoli.
The men died Dec. 7 after they were trapped in a burning house at 1121 Clamtown Road. They were rescued from the home and transported to St. Luke's Hospital-Miners Campus in Coaldale, where they were pronounced dead.
There are two events open to the public on the grounds of the National Emergency Training Center: The NFF Candlelight Service at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, hosted by Fire Captain Garon Mosby of the St. Louis Fire Department; and the NFF Memorial Service at 10 a.m. Sunday, hosted by journalist Hillary Howard.
Memorial Weekend will also see two events exclusively for the families and fire departments of honored firefighters.
Alejandro N. Mayorkas, U.S. secretary of homeland security, is scheduled to speak Sunday.
At the memorial service, the NFFF presents each family with an American flag that has flown over the NFF Memorial and the U.S. Capitol, a badge and a rose.
The NFFF will livestream both events on its website, firehero.org, as well as on its YouTube channel and Facebook page.
Those not attending in person can pay tribute through Light the Night for Fallen Firefighters from Thursday through Sunday by lighting their homes, businesses, landmarks or fire departments with red lights.
Moreover, the American flag will be lowered to half-staff on all federal buildings Sunday. The public is also encouraged to lower their American flags that day.