The annual Wisconsin State Fire Memorial’s “Ride for Remembrance” is Saturday, and special guests from New York will be getting special treatment from Greenfield.
FDNY Rescue 5 and World Trade Center first responder Vincent “Vinny” Forras will be in Greenfield for the event, raising awareness for the Remembrance Rescue Project, a non-profit organization created by firefighters to restore, preserve and share FDNY Rescue 4 and Rescue 5.
FDNY Rescue 5 is one of the three units that were salvageable after the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Each of the five boroughs in New York City has a Heavy Rescue unit. Every firefighter that responded to the World Trade Center on the Heavy Rescues died, and Rescue 1 and Rescue 2 were destroyed.
The primary mission of the Remembrance Rescue Project is to provide education, especially for children who were too young to understand the events of Sept. 11. The project also attempts to magnify the significance of 9/11 to the United States and .
This year’s Wisconsin State Fire Memorial’s ride begins at in Greenfield at 11:30 a.m. and finishes later that day in East Troy.
The public can view FDNY Rescue 5 before the event. Rescue 5 will be arriving at the House of Harley at 11 a.m. Friday and stay until 4 p.m. After an appearance at the North Prairie Fire Department from 5-8 p.m. Friday, Rescue 5 will return to Greenfield, where it will be housed in Station 1 overnight, starting at approximately 9 p.m.
In an effort to make such an important part of Sept. 11 and fire service history available to the public, Station 1 will remain open until at least midnight and will re-open for Rescue 5 viewing at 6 a.m. until it goes to the House of Harley for ride registration at 9 a.m.
The Remembrance Rescue Project is a joint effort between fire departments and fire associations across the country to host the Rescue 4 and 5 throughout the year. The project coordinates with host fire department to facilitate 9/11 educational programming, memorials and remembrance events. The project strives to keep the memories alive of those who died on Sept. 11 and all firefighters killed in the line of duty every year.
The appearance of this rig will commemorate the two firefighters that died in Wisconsin during 2012: Colby Fire Lieutenant Jamison Kampmeyer and Birchwood Firefighter John Colbert.
Forras will be in Wisconsin for a week educating and remembering those that died on 9/11 and those that are dying every week from their exposures working “The Pile.” Additionally, Forras is the founder of Gear Up Foundation, which is dedicated to paying tribute to those lost on 9/11 and acting as Ambassadors of Goodwill by helping less fortunate fire departments in Central and South America and around the world by providing used turnout gear, fire hose, self-contained breathing apparatus and used fire apparatus.