SPRINGFIELD – On International Firefighters Day, House Assistant Minority Leader Brad Stephens (R-Rosemont) is honoring and recognizing firefighters in the 20th District and across Illinois for their service. International Firefighters Day is recognized on May 4th each year to honor the sacrifices firefighters make to ensure their communities and environment are as safe as possible and to thank current and past firefighters.
“Firefighters go to work each day not knowing what they will face, yet they willingly proceed to protect our communities,” said Leader Stephens. “That type of courage and sacrifice is nothing short of heroic, and we are privileged to have these brave men and women serving in our communities. While it’s important to recognize and honor current, past, and fallen firefighters on International Firefighters Day, remember to express your gratitude throughout the year to your local fire department. Thank you firefighters and fire families for all you do to keep our neighborhoods, hometowns, and state safe.”
Since the last Illinois firefighters’ memorial, four firefighters have made the ultimate sacrifice in Illinois. These brave individuals were Lieutenant Jan Tchoryk (Last Alarm: April 5, 2023), Firefighter/EMT Jermaine A. Pelt (Last Alarm: April 4, 2023), Chief Larry Peasley (Last Alarm: January 4, 2023), and Firefighter/EMT Brian Rehnberg (Last Alarm: December 25, 2022). Lieutenant Tchoryk and Firefighter Pelt served with the Chicago Fire Department, Chief Peasley served with the Maroa Countryside Fire Protection District, and Firefighter Rehnberg served with the North Park Fire Protection District.
“It’s also important to be aware that firefighters can lose their teammates in the line of duty and walk with that burden through life,” Rep. Stephens continued. “I will continue working to improve access to mental health resources for firefighters in the General Assembly so we can help those who serve us.”