Next month, the names of James W. Daley and Donald E. Young will be etched into the International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) Memorial Wall in Colorado.
Being a firefighter is being part of a brotherhood, said Framingham Firefighters IAFF Local 1652 Union President Joseph Fonseca.
"The day you got hired was the day you joined a family that is global. A family that never forgets. Both of our families will be honored in Colorado next month. Their names will be put on the wall," said Fonseca during the ceremony. "The names are not just etchings. They are to let you know that Jim and Donny are never forgotten. And that their families will always be part of our families. That they will always be remembered. That is what that wall means to us. It's more than names just etched."In 1976, the IAFF Memorial Foundation was founded. Ten years later in 1986, a 20-foot bronze statute depicting a firefighter descending from a ladder with a baby in one arm was erected. The caption reads "Somewhere, everyday," said Fonseca.
"I remember the first time I read that and I thought it completely captures that somewhere, everyday that this is happening," said Fonesca.
Three years later in 1989, the first of two granite walls that bare the names of fallen firefighters was added to the memorial in Pike's Peak, with the majestic Rocky Mountains in the background.
Since 1989, every September the IAFF holds a "solemn ceremonial service at the site honoring the sacrifices professional firefighters have given to this occupation and this September it will honor two of our own here in Framingham," said Fonesca.
"It's a tradition like any tradition in the fire service. It's important to carry on and remember those in the past. It is something that Jimmy and Donny were ambassadors of," said Fonesca during the ceremony. "If anybody knew these two they knew they were not shy of words. They spoke their minds. They knew what their roles were."
He said they passed on to his generation of Framingham firefighters the "important of tradition. The importance of honor and the importance of how you carry yourself and that you never forget your loved ones. They did that best I ever knew," said Fonesca, who said it is this generation's responsibility to carry on the tradition and "to let those behind us to know you never forget those who served."
Framingham Union Vice President Paul Gildea presented the medal of honor to Joyce Young and Helen Daley Friday morning.
Young, who lived in Natick, died on Oct. 27 2012 after a battle with prostate cancer at the age of 65. A Framingham South High School graduate, he served in the U.S. Army before joining the Framingham Fire Department in 1978. He retired in 2005. His son Todd is a member of the Framingham Fire Department and was in attendance Friday along with his sister Laura and their families.
Daley died Jan. 8 2010, at the age of 67. He served as a paratrooper n the 82nd American Airborne of the U.S. Army and was a firefighter for the Town of Framingham for 30 years. He lived in Framingham for years before retiring to Maine.
Framingham Fire Chief Gary Daughtery didn't work with either firefighter but said Friday's ceremony was important to recognize the "dedication and service" the two made to the Town of Framingham.
The 2013 IAFF Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial Service will be held Saturday, Sept. 21.