Fire department honors those who have fallen in the line of duty

Paul Thompson
Northeast News

On the morning of Saturday, September 8, Kansas City, Missouri Fire Department personnel and their families gathered at the Firefighters Fountain and Memorial to honor those who have fallen in the line of duty. Deputy Chief Jimmy Walker was among those who read the names of every KCFD firefighter whose life has been lost in the line of duty, including Northeast firefighters John Mesh and Larry Leggio. Among the attendees were members of the Mesh and Leggio families, including Larry’s widow, Missy Leggio. Leggio declined to discuss the upcoming sentencing hearing of convicted arsonist Thu Hong Nguyen, instead focusing on the future plans for KCFD’s firefighter memorial service, which will be held annually on the Saturday before September 11. “We just want to make sure that this event gets bigger every year,” Leggio said. Walker’s own father was also remembered during the emotional ceremony. After the reading of each name, a ceremonial bell was rung to honor the firefighter’s final call. “When a call comes out, the bell rings, so it’s just symbolic,” Walker said afterwards. Since 1887, 112 KCFD firefighters have died in the line of duty.

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