ALBANY, N.Y. (WWTI) — On Tuesday, 24 firefighters were added to the New York State Fallen Firefighters Memorial during an event at the Empire State Plaza to honor those killed in the line of duty.
One of those included City of Watertown Firefighter Peyton Morse. The LaFargeville native died back in March 2021 after suffering a medical emergency at the New York State Fire Academy.
The 21-year-old firefighter was participating in the Recruity Training Program when the incident occurred and then rushed to a local hospital, where he regained a heartbeat and was then airlifted to Guthrie Robert Packet Hospital in Sayre, Pennsylvania. He remained in the Intensive Care Unit with his wife and family until he died on March 12.
Since his death, local fire departments and communities have held vigils, residents have used the hashtag #PeytonStrong, and the world-renowned FDNY Emerald Society played at his funeral procession in Clayton, New York.
Morse’s name was added to the state’s Fallen Firefighters Memorial on October 5 as a part of a statewide memorial service. Gov. Kathy Hochul addressed the families and paid tribute to each of the fallen firefighters.
“The names engraved on the New York State Fallen Firefighters Memorial will forever be remembered for self-sacrifice and dedication to community,” Governor Hochul said at the ceremony. “New York is a better place because of their service, and I offer my sincerest condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of those who are no longer with us. We will never forget.”
Additional firefighters honored included Firefighter Anthony Alese, Firefighter John W. Boyle, Captain Robert E. Collis, Firefighter Clifford R. DiMuro, Firefighter John R. Elges, Lieutenant Richard G, Estreicher, Firefighter Michael L. Feldman, Firefighter Joseph A. Ferrugia, Lieutenant Donald Franz, Firefighter Charles Gibbons, Firefighter William T. Gibbons, Firefighter David L. Jahnes, Firefighter Emanueal Lake, Jr., Firefighter Kevin Landau, Firefighter Jared C. Lloyd, Firefighter Joseph R. Losinno, Lieutenant John T. Moran, Battalion Chief Dennis J. Moynihan, Firefighter Jacob I. Schoonmaker, Firefighter Donald G. Thomas, Captain George A. Turner, Jr, Firefighter Joseph L. Vicario and Chief Robert E. White, Jr.
As of October 2021, there will be 2,630 names on the wall. The memory of fallen firefighters is commemorated annually during National Fire Prevention Week.