Fallen Firefighters Honored In Annual Ceremony

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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW)-Topeka fire chiefs read off the names of fallen firefighters with each "ring" of the bell as family, friends and the Topeka Fire Department gathered to pay tribute to those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

For Karloyn Sharp, this ceremony hits close to home.

"It's right there," says Karolyn as she points to her husband's name engraved on one of the bricks in the memorial. Her husband, Oren Sharp, was a retired firefighter and he died 5 months ago.

"It's hard, he was a very honorable man, he had a very honorable career, he loved the fire department and he loved the firefighters, so it's wonderful to see them honor him," says Karolyn.

"I would like to say to conclude, by saying to the families, who are fallen, who are here today, please know that the loved ones are not forgotten," says Mayor Larry Wolgast.

Even though Karolyn says this is a sad day, she says she was able to have a fun time participating in the activities for the Fire Department's Open House.

Karolyn traveled high in the sky on an aerial ride; while kids enjoyed sitting in antique fire trucks, learning how to use a fire hose and trying on firefighter gear. Karolyn says she is "doing the best she can" and is happy her husband will never be forgotten.

"It feels very, very good," says Karolyn.

Council members Karen Hiller, Nathan Schmidt and City Manager Jim Colson were also in attendance.