June 19, 2007

9 Firefighters Killed in Charleston, SC ~ What You Can Do

South Carolina firefighters mourn the loss of fellow firefighters.Of course you've seen the news about the nine firefighters killed in Charleston, South Carolina. It's always a tragedy when a first responder dies. Brave men and women put their lives on the line every day to protect and rescue people like me, you and our families and they aren't doing it for the money. The starting pay for a firefighter in Charleston is little more than $24,000 a year.

These are the names of the firefighters killed yesterday:

- Capt. William "Billy" Hutchinson, 48 (30)
- Capt. Mike Benke, 49 (29)
- Capt. Louis Mulkey, 34 (11.5)
- Engineer Mark Kelsey, 40 (12.5)
- Engineer Bradford "Brad" Baity, 37 (9)
- Assistant Engineer Michael French, 27 (1.5)
- Firefighter James "Earl" Drayton, 56 (32)
- Firefighter Brandon Thompson, 27 (4)
- Firefighter Melven Champaign, 46 (2)

The numbers after their ages are how many years each was a firefighter. Between them they had over 130 years of experience.

The families of these brave men are going to have a rough time ahead of them. There's a very easy way for you to help them out. You can make a donation to the firefighters' families at any local Bank of America location or send money to: The City of Charleston Firemen's Fund, P.O. Box 304, Charleston, SC, 29402.

I'm sure that even the smallest donation will be appreciated.

[Image source]

Cross posted from A Lovely Infidel

Posted by JanetteS at June 19, 2007 08:50 PM

It's a sad day when that many perish from entering a burning building. It happened in my area a few years back when the fire fighters entered the burning warehouse set ablaze by Martin Pang in an arson for the insurance money. It's a judgement call by the commander as to whether they enter a building, it's anybody's call as to whether that call was in good judgement or not, I'm sure whoever made the decision is in a terrible state of mind and is blaming themselves, pray for them too. Theirs is one tough job.

Posted by: Jack at June 20, 2007 08:26 PM