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Durham Fire Department Dedicates Newest Truck to the Late Charlie Larsen

Larsen, an honorary member of the Durham Volunteer Fire Department, passed away last year.

Fire Chief Robert Chadd, and sisters Tina Gossner and Lisa Larsen, sisters of the late Charlie Larsen. Credit: Ronald DeRosa
Fire Chief Robert Chadd, and sisters Tina Gossner and Lisa Larsen, sisters of the late Charlie Larsen. Credit: Ronald DeRosa
It was shortly after Charlie Larsen passed away in February 2013 when Durham Fire Chief Robert Chadd had an idea.

The Durham Volunteer Fire Company was in the process of obtaining a brand new fire truck.

So, Chadd decided to recommend to the 45-member Durham fire company a proposal to dedicate the new apparatus in the memory the late Larsen, a longtime honorary member and a beloved supporter of the DVFC.

"The vote was 100 percent unanimous," the fire chief said.

Fast forward to today, and a plaque is now permanently affixed to the side of the shiny new engine that reads: 

"This truck is dedicated
to the memory of
Charlie Larsen
Honorary Firefighter
Durham Volunteer Fire Company
November 2013"

Larsen, who passed away on Feb. 6, 2013 at at age 52, loved the Durham fire department, his sisters Tina Gossner and Lisa Larsen said. He used to be down at the department every Sunday morning to open the building up, and he loved participating in the department's activities such as marching in the Memorial Day Parade, Lisa Larsen said.

"We used to say that this was his church," Gossner said.

In the entire 82-year history of the department, this is only the second apparatus to be dedicated in someone's memory, said Firefighter Allen Fritts. And, since his passing, the DVFC has recognized the late Larsen with a scholarship.

The officially dedication happened in November and, since then, this newest truck has seen a lot of action.

"This is our highest call volume truck," Chadd said. "We use it for a number of responses, including fire and rescue."

Despite not being here, Charlie Larsen's memory lives on every time the fire department responds to a need in Durham.
Dave D January 16, 2014 at 06:23 AM
Well done Chief, and all the members of the DVFC.
Nancy Morand January 16, 2014 at 08:42 AM
Great memorial to a Super Fireman ! God Bless Charlie !
Leslie Bulion January 16, 2014 at 09:15 AM
How wonderful. Whenever we see the new firetruck, and especially during our Memorial Day parade, we will wave to Charlie.

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