Lynn firefighter added to Massachusetts Firefighter Memorial

Massachusetts Gov. Maura Healey was one of several state leaders at a ceremony for commemorating firefighters added to the Massachusetts Firefighters Memorial. (James Bartlett)

BOSTON  —A member of the Lynn Fire Department who served for three decades was honored as part of the Massachusetts Fallen Firefighters Memorial.

Around 40 members of the department were in attendance at a ceremony Monday at the Massachusetts State House to commemorate the addition of Alphonzo “Al” Ancrum to the memorial’s Ring of Honor.

“For firefighters, this memorial is a tribute to the oath we took to protect and serve our communities,” Jay Colbert, President and Chairman of the Massachusetts Firefighters Memorial, said in his remarks.

Ancrum, who died in January, served in the department for more than 30 years before he retired in 2018.

Ancrum’s wife, Tarsha, was in attendance during the ceremony and said it was a bittersweet feeling to see her husband honored.

“It’s emotional,” she said. “My husband loved his job and he loved being a firefighter. I know he’s proud of all the years he put in.”

Ancrum said she was also happy to see how many members of the department came out to remember her husband’s years of service.

“It’s just a true testament to the brotherhood that they have with each other,” she said. 

Lynn Fire Chief Dan Sullivan was in attendance at the ceremony and had served with Ancrum.

“The term ‘firefighter’s firefighter’ — he was it,” said Sullivan. “He always had a smile on his face. He was a fun-loving person. But when it was time to work, there was no one better.”

Sullivan noted how special it was for Ancrum’s memory to live on as part of the memorial.

“Every year when we come back here we’ll be able to see his name,” Sullivan said.

The memorial was originally slated to be held outside, but was moved into the State House due to the threat of severe weather.

State leaders including Gov. Maura Healey and Lt. Gov. Kim Driscoll were at the ceremony as well.

“It’s important to recognize the courage (and) the dedication of the firefighters who protect us every single day,” Healey said in her remarks to the more than 100 people who attended the ceremony. “Whenever there is danger and people need help, firefighters are there.”

Capt. Daniel Strabone of the Peabody Fire Department was also honored in the ceremony, along with Everett Smith, Albert Lalime, William Hyde, Capt. Mark Ryan and Chief George Cahoon from the Swampscott Fire Department.

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