Baltimore County Ceremony Will Honor Firefighters, EMS, and Police Who Died In The Line Of Duty


Credit: Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens

BALTIMORE COUNTY - Baltimore County will honor Maryland police, firefighters, and emergency medical/rescue personnel who have died in the line of duty at the 38th annual Fallen Heroes Day observance.

“As we gather at the Fallen Heroes Memorial each year, we are deeply grateful to the men and women of the public safety community who have given their lives in service to us all. We are humbled by their sacrifice, and honor their dedication and bravery,” said Jack Mitchell, President of Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens.

This year’s observance will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, May 5, 2023, at the Fallen Heroes Memorial at Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens. The ceremony will open with a procession of honor guard units from across the state, mounted units, and motorcycle police. During the ceremony, the families of the fallen heroes will be presented with a replica of the Fallen Heroes Memorial and a resolution from the Maryland General Assembly. The ceremony will conclude with a wreath placement, followed by a 21-gun salute, Taps and a fly-over.

The ceremony will also be live-streamed and can be seen online at 1:00 p.m. on the Dulaney Valley Memorial Gardens Facebook page.

The following fallen heroes will be honored during the ceremony:

Corrections Officer Gregory G. Collins, Maryland Division of Corrections.

End of Watch: June 4, 2001.

Officer Gregory Collins, a three-year veteran of the department, was shot and killed after completing his shift at the Eastern Correctional Institution by a former inmate in retaliation for a perceived grievance. His murder remained unsolved until 2019 when tips led investigators to the former inmate who was ultimately convicted of Officer Collins’ murder. Gregory Collins was known as a highly respected officer and natural leader, with “a heart of gold.” A military veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps and the Maryland National Guard, Officer Collins was 31 years old at the time of his death.

Captain David A. Insley, Jr., Salisbury Fire Department.

End of Watch: June 11, 2018.

A dedicated first responder whose fire service career spanned more than 32 years, Captain David Insley held many leadership positions. He began as a Firefighter/Paramedic, and then his passion for diving led him to become a master scuba diver and instructor. He not only served as the Commander of the dive team, Capt. Insley trained other fire departments and government agencies in underwater programs as well. As an EMS Supervisor, Captain Insley’s direct knowledge of the impact of this vital work led him to help form a Critical Incident Stress Management Team. He was a military veteran who proudly served with the Maryland National Guard. Captain Insley succumbed to occupational cancer at the age of 56.

Chief James P. Seavey, Sr., Cabin John Park Volunteer Fire Department.

End of Watch: September 4, 2018.

Chief Seavey was a highly respected and much loved first responder who served his community for 42 years and was a key member of state, regional and national fire and rescue organizations. He retired as Fire Chief of Montgomery County’s Cabin John Park Fire Department in 2017. As a career firefighter, he also served the D.C. Fire and EMS Department. Chief Seavey was the co-author of the nationally recognized Lavender Ribbon Report: Best Practices for Preventing Firefighter Cancer. Among his many local, national and international awards, he was named Volunteer Fire Chief of the Year. Chief James Seavey succumbed to occupational cancer at the age of 58.

Lieutenant Brad A. Scott, Howard County Department of Fire and Rescue Services.

End of Watch: May 31, 2020.

Firefighter/Heavy Vehicle operator Brad Scott proudly served the Howard County community for 13 years. He spent most of his career at Banneker Fire Station #7 in Columbia, MD, where he was responsible for driving Engine 71. Brad Scott did his job with exceptional skill and professionalism. In 2019, Brad was awarded the Bronze Medal of Valor for rescuing a resident trapped on the second floor of a house fire in Columbia. His calling to serve was reflected by a fire career that began at age 14 at the Lower Chichester Fire Company in Pennsylvania where he was a member for 28 years, and by his 20 years as a volunteer firefighter with the Claymont Fire Company in Delaware. Firefighter /HVO Scott, who was posthumously promoted to the rank of Lieutenant, died at the age of 43 from complications of occupational cancer.

Corporal Gregory J. Bednarek, Maryland Transportation Authority Police.

End of Watch: November 9, 2020.

A 19-year veteran of the Transportation Authority Police, Corporal Bednarek was assigned to the Hatem Bridge Detachment, one of the busiest bridges in the state. He was known as an exceptional officer and caring individual who devoted himself to helping others. He was proud to serve the citizens of Maryland and was a highly valued and respected member of the MDTA police team. Corporal Bednarek, age 40, died from Covid-19 complications.

President Milton A. “Butch” Bloom III, Leitersburg Volunteer Fire Company.

End of Watch: January 19, 2022.

President and past Chief Milton Bloom was a beloved life member of the Leitersburg Company in Washington County. Butch ran tens of thousands of fire and EMS calls throughout his 57-year fire service career, with his last run responding to a structure fire only weeks before his passing. He was known as a visionary who made sure that members had state-of-the-art gear and equipment. He also led the completion of the current fire station. President Bloom was an active member of the Washington County Fire and Rescue Association and the Maryland State Firemen’s Association. A top responder and dedicated leader, Milton Bloom succumbed to Covid-19 complications at the age of 73.

Deputy First Class Kenneth C. Olander, Frederick County Sheriff’s Office.

End of Watch: March 2, 2022.

DFC Ken Olander served with the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office for 32 years. For him it was not just a job, it was a deeply felt calling to keep his community safe. A dedicated professional, “Kenny O,” as he was known to friends and loved ones, worked in numerous capacities including: patrol operations deputy, the traffic unit, school resource officer, and most recently as the community deputy for Myersville, Maryland. He was also the agency’s lead Drug Recognition Expert and a certified police instructor. A U.S. Army veteran, Deputy First Class Olander was 61 years old when he succumbed to complications of Covid-19.

Deputy First Class Glenn R. Hilliard, Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office.

End of Watch: June 12, 2022.

DFC Hilliard was shot and killed while on foot pursuit attempting to arrest a subject wanted for multiple felony warrants from several jurisdictions. He is the second Wicomico County Deputy killed in the line of duty since 1968. DFC Glenn Hillard served with the Wicomico County Sheriff’s Office for six years and previously with the Berlin Police Department for ten years. He held several positions throughout his distinguished law enforcement career, including: Deputy U. S. Marshall Task Force Officer, Seasonal Police Officer for Ocean City Police Department, Crisfield Police Officer, Berlin Police Officer, Associate Instructor for Eastern Shore Criminal Justice Academy, as well as a FAA Certified Drone Pilot. Deputy First Class Hilliard, who approached his work with excellence and compassion, was age 41 at the time of his death.

Deputy Fire Chief Charles M. “Trey” Kelso, III, Beltsville Volunteer Fire Department, and past Fire Chief, Laurel Volunteer Fire Department.

End of Watch: September 24, 2022.

Trey Kelso had more than 25 years of expert experience and leadership in fire and emergency services, 22 of those years serving Prince George’s communities. During his impressive career, he was a volunteer Firefighter, Paramedic and Emergency Medical Technician, a designated Chief Fire Officer through the Center for Public Safety Excellence and a well-respected Fire Instructor for the University of Maryland Fire Rescue Institute. He was also a founding member and Maryland State Director of the Maryland Chapter of the Firefighter Cancer Support Network. Chief Kelso, who was lauded for his tireless work ethic and passion for the firefighting community, passed away at the age of 45 from a medical emergency.

Fire Chief Neil A. Payne, Stockton Volunteer Fire Company.

End of Watch: October 16, 2022.

Chief Neil Payne’s extraordinary legacy of service spanned more than three decades. He was the longest running Fire Chief in Worcester County at the time of his passing and the longest serving Chief of the Stockton Fire Company since its founding in 1924. He was a highly skilled Cardiac Rescue Technician and mentor to many younger firefighters. Chief Payne, known as hard working with an easy-going demeanor and kind spirit, viewed the well-being of others as a priority in his life. Chief Neil Payne was 59 years old when he suffered a medical emergency after responding to a call for service.

EMT/Firefighter Juan M. Wilson, Baltimore City Fire Department.

End of Watch: October 30, 2022.

EMT/FF Juan Wilson, who served with the Baltimore City Fire Department for 11 years, was a highly valued member of Engine 53 in Edmondson Village. He was described as an exceptional firefighter/EMT medic who exemplified professionalism and compassion. On September 19, 2022, EMT/FF Wilson was on a medical call rendering assistance to a patient and performing CPR. At that time, he himself suffered a medical emergency which caused him to be hospitalized. He remained on life support since the incident and passed away the following month. Juan Wilson was 34 years old at the time of his death.

A moment of silence will be observed for the following first responders:

Deputy Sheriff Lorin M. Readmond, Loving County Sherriff’s Office, Texas.

End of Watch: January 29, 2022.

Deputy Readmond, who was born in Baltimore, was killed in a vehicle collision when enroute to assist another deputy who made a traffic stop. Deputy Readmond, who was a U.S. Navy Reserve veteran, was known as an exceptional member of the Texas law enforcement community. Deputy Lorin Readmond was 41 years old at the time of her passing.

Assistant Fire Chief Zachary Paris, Community Fire Company of New Tripoli, Pennsylvania.

End of Watch: December 7, 2022.

Chief Paris was one of two volunteers killed while battling a 3-alarm house fire in West Penn Township, Pennsylvania with the Community Fire Company of New Tripoli. Zachary Paris, age 36, was also a dedicated and esteemed career member of the Frederick County Division of Fire and Rescue Services.

Each year the ceremony also recognizes one firefighter and one police officer who died in the line of duty before Fallen Heroes Day was established. Remembered this year will be:

Lt. John T. Killian, Jr., a 26-year veteran of the Baltimore City Fire Department. Lt. Killian, age 51, died on March 10, 1985, when the floor collapsed as he was battling a rowhouse fire on Hudson Street.

Lt. Colonel Harry L. George, a 25-year veteran of the Maryland Natural Resources Police. Lt. Colonel George, age 54, died on October 24, 1978 from injuries sustained two months earlier when the MD Department of Natural Resources plane crashed near Edgewater, MD.

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