The Palatine Fire Department’s Honor Guard is a ceremonial unit which serves our department and community by preserving the traditions of the fire service. Members of the Honor Guard have received special training in military-style drill and ceremony etiquette, with a specific emphasis on the history and traditions of the fire service.
This unit was originally proposed in 2007, and became operational in 2008 with 5 members. The first official event in which the unit participated was on February 23, 2008 at a ceremony at the Palatine Firefighters Memorial, commemorating the 35th anniversary of the fire at the Ben Franklin store that claimed the lives of three Palatine firefighters: Warren Ahlgrim, Richard Freeman and John Wilson. Since that time, the unit has stood ceremonial honor guard at wakes of firefighters, marched in parades, and participated in numerous commemoration ceremonies. Specifically,for Palatine firefighters Wesley Comfort, Jr. and Leonard Nebel, who were killed in the line of duty from a fire apparatus crash on October 1, 1946, and in the annual Patriots Day memorial, commemorating the sacrifice of the hundreds of New York City firefighters and police officers on September 11, 2001.
The Honor Guard currently has 10 members, consisting of both active and retired Palatine firefighters, several of whom are also part of the statewide Associated Firefighters of Illinois (AFFI) honor guard. Our unit utilizes special ceremonial axes and pike poles custom made for Palatine.
Requests for the unit’s participation at an event can be made by calling our administrative office at (847) 202-6340; decisions on which events the unit will attend are made on a case-by-case basis.