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Photo of the Baltimore County Fire Service Memorial Monument in Towson.The Baltimore County Fire Service’s annual Ceremony of Remembrance, which honors those members who have lost their lives in the line of duty, is scheduled for Sunday, May 21.

The ceremony will be held, rain or shine, at 2 p.m. at the Fire Service Memorial Monument in Patriot Plaza in Towson.

The Baltimore County Fire Department and Baltimore County Volunteer Fireman’s Association jointly organize the event.

Honoring Fallen Heroes

Forty-five Baltimore County firefighters and emergency medical personnel have died in the line of duty. These include 21 career members and 24 volunteer members.

Fire Chief John Hohman and other career and volunteer fire service leaders will honor the fallen by placing a wreath on the memorial shrine during the ceremony.

The shrine was built entirely with funds by members of the Fire Service. The memorial was sculpted in Portugal of Portuguese red granite, and consists of a Maltese cross flanked by two columns.

Inscribed on the monument are the names of the fallen and the words of Saint John, 15:13: “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”

A Parkville man was arrested this morning and charged with first-degree arson in connection with the intentional burning of a home in the Middle River area a year ago.

Joseph Alphonzo Heinze II, 33, of the 3300 block of Taylor Avenue, 21234, is charged with first-degree arson and held without bail at the Baltimore County Detention Center.

On May 22, 2015, Baltimore County Fire and Police personnel responded to a home in the 3900 block of Cutty Sark Road, 21220, for a fire. First responders found the first floor of the home on fire. Fire Department personnel extinguished the fire, and there were no reports of injuries.

The homeowner, Heinze, told investigators that he had left the home and when he returned it was on fire.

An investigation by BCoPD Arson detectives led to identification of Heinze as the person responsible for the fire. An arrest warrant was obtained for Heinze on December 6.

Detectives learned that Heinze is a Probationary Emergency Medical Technician with the Baltimore City Fire Department. It has not been confirmed if he was employed with the city Fire Department at the time of the May 22, 2015 fire.

Heinze also is a member of the Bowleys Quarters Volunteer Fire Dept. He has been suspended by the company.

Baltimore County’s volunteer firefighters will receive $7 million in county aid during the next year. This includes grants to specific fire companies and subsidies for preventive maintenance, fuel and utilities.

The financial support also includes $1.7 million worth of incentives for 20 volunteer companies that provide medical service during hours of peak demand.

Check Distribution at Bowleys Quarters VFC

County Executive Kevin Kamenetz presented a portion of this money at the September 20 annual meeting of the Baltimore County Volunteer Firemen’s Association (BCVFA). This year’s meeting was hosted by the Bowleys Quarters Volunteer Fire Company.

Baltimore County has a joint fire service that includes 25 career stations and 33 volunteer fire, rescue and EMS companies, as well as two volunteer-run canteen companies that supply food and drink to responders during strenuous incidents. The volunteer companies are independent corporations that raise most of the money needed for their operations through carnivals, bingo, fundraising drives and other activities.

In addition, each year Baltimore County provides millions of dollars in support to the volunteers.

Over the course of the year, the County expects to pay out $1.7 million to the 20 companies that provide medic service. This “attended status” program rewards companies that staff medic units during hours of high demand.

New BCVFA Officers

Also on Saturday, the BCVFA elected new officers for 2014-2015. They are:

President: John McDowell, Arbutus Volunteer Fire Company
Senior Vice President: Glen Resnick, Pikesville Volunteer Fire Company
Vice President, Finance: Jamie Cahn, Lutherville Volunteer Fire Company
Vice President, Operations: Tom Ludwig, Wise Avenue Volunteer Fire Company
Vice President, Administration: Kathy Walker, Cockeysville Volunteer Fire Company
Secretary: Robert Frank, Middle River Ambulance Rescue Company

 
 
Revised September 27, 2016