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Firefighters take pride in country and its colors
Turlock City firefighters Steven Kramer and Kevin Tidwell prepare to raise the flag at Fire Station No. 1 on Wednesday morning. - photo by Candy Padilla

As President’s Day weekend approaches many will locate their American flag and fly it from their home front to recognize the national holiday and remember the sacrifices and courage of our founding presidents. However, for the Turlock Fire Department the American flag plays a role in everyday life.

“Flag etiquette is a part of our daily routine and we recognize the sacrifices and freedom it represents. We have a lot of respect for the veterans and those who have served,” said Fire Chief Tim Lohman, who has served in the fire service for 34 years. 

The flag plays an integral role at the Turlock Fire Department Station 1 as it is raised each morning and taken down each evening. The fire department also properly disposes of tattered flags when it is time to retire them. The American flag is also present on every firefighter’s uniform, accompanying each firefighter as they protect the community.

“It’s neat that we display the American flag on our uniforms and they are present all throughout the stations. The firefighters take great pride in working in America and the opportunities we have,” said Battalion Chief Gary Carlson. “There is a lot of pride in being a firefighter, especially as the days like President’s Day and Memorial Day come up.”

When Americans think of the tragedy that occurred on September 11, 2011 often times the image of the Fire Department New York firefighters raising an American flag amidst the destruction comes to mind. Since the impact of 9-11 still haunts many Americans daily lives, the Turlock Fire Department has also hosted annual ceremonies for 9-11 at the fire station and have flown flags on their fire engines since the tragedy occurred. 

The fire department has also served as a place marker for the downtown Fourth of July parade as the fire engines park at the intersection of Broadway and Main Street in Turlock with their enormous flag hanging from the truck indicating that American pride is present year round for firefighters in Turlock.