VIDEO: West Seattle Eagle Scout Ben Beale presents firefighter memorial at Joint Training Facility

(WSB photos and video)

22 years after four Seattle firefighters died in the Mary Pang warehouse arson, the loss continues to loom large for SFD. The department’s Joint Training Facility in southeast West Seattle has a new memorial to the lost firefighters, thanks to a local Eagle Scout who officially presented it at a ceremony this afternoon.

Ben Beale is an 18-year-old O’Dea HS senior who is a member of West Seattle Troop 282. He and his troop were at the JTF this afternoon along with SFD Chief Harold Scoggins (with Ben in the photo above) and other SFD representatives, including firefighter Isaac Rivera, who introduced Ben and worked with him on the project, for which Seattle Fire Fighters Union IAFF Local 27 was also acknowledged:

Before the ceremony, we asked Ben how he first heard of the Pang arson tragedy, which happened years before he was born. He explained that his brother also had created a memorial which was on display at West Seattle’s Fire Station 32 (and will be returned when the new FS 32 is complete). He decided to make one for the JTF.

Along with a small-scale model of Hai Ying Wu‘s Occidental Square memorial sculpture, its materials include rock, rope, and rough-hewn wood, to show the challenging circumstances in which firefighters risk their lives. “Firefighters work hard, and find a way to get things done,” he noted.

Ben’s project will be permanently on display in the JTF administration building’s main hallway. While it’s not routinely open to the public, the building does host some public events (such as community meetings in the past year related to the nearby Myers Way Parcels), so look for it if you go to one.

12 Replies to "VIDEO: West Seattle Eagle Scout Ben Beale presents firefighter memorial at Joint Training Facility"

  • Raye March 25, 2017 (10:52 pm)

    Thank you, Ben and fellow Scouts. I remember that awful fire. Let’s never forget the sacrifices our firefighters make.

    • WSB March 25, 2017 (11:11 pm)

      I was on duty in a local TV newsroom the night of the arson. I will never forget the shock and horror of hearing the radio calls about the lost firefighters … and will always remember everything that followed, including the huge service for them, and the arsonist Martin Pang fleeing to Brazil. By the way, he is still in state prison, and still owes restitution. – TR

  • dsa March 26, 2017 (12:05 am)

    That is an awesome piece.  It is professional looking and artistic.  Did he say anything about the designing it?  And what are the figures made of?  How did he do it?  Do you happen to know?  thanks

  • sc March 26, 2017 (8:26 am)

    I remember that one of the firefighters was from the fire station on 35th that is now a private residence.  And somewhere 4 white rose bushes were planted in their memory.  Does any one remember where that is?  

  • Diane March 26, 2017 (9:15 am)

    Beautiful memorial.  Good job Ben and troop 282!

  • Alki Resident March 26, 2017 (9:31 am)

    It’s very painful to hear the firefighters names again, I’ll never forget that day. I’ve never cried so hard as I did watching the funeral and hearing Amazing Grace with the bag pipes. 

    What Ben created is such a wonderful honor to not only the FD but to all of us locals. Be proud Ben for this accomplishment. And thank you. 

    Thank you also to our fire depts. who work so hard and train so hard and see too much tragedy.

  • Troop 282 March 26, 2017 (11:16 am)

    Well done Ben – we are proud of  your project and your service to our Troop and your community.    

  • K C March 26, 2017 (6:39 pm)

    What a fitting Eagle Scout project 

    As painful as the fire was for the Seattle Fire Dept there were many lessons learned. And we are a better, safer department because of it  

    We as a community must never forget. This Eagle project on display at the training facility will remind every firefighter that passes by of that fire and the losses associated with it  

    Ben, thank for this project, as a fellow Eagle Scout you a a marked person for life.

    Job well done, my friend

  • Jake from State Farm March 26, 2017 (8:18 pm)

    I know it took a lot of hard work to get this done. Probably multiple attempts to get thing exactly correct, probably multiple attempts to get all of the sign-off and approvals but actions or projects that are worth doing are going to be a uphill battle, and Ben YOU DID IT!!!

    Congratulation for a fantastic Eagle project.

  • Bob March 26, 2017 (9:55 pm)

    I was at the Pang Warehouse at the time.  This event redefined my life and is one of those things that shapes my thinking, even 22 years later.  Never forget:

    Lt. Gregory M. Shoemaker

    Lt. Walter D. Kilgore

    James T. Brown

    Randall R. Terlicker

  • Geri Sullivan March 27, 2017 (6:24 am)

    I am Randy Terlicker’s sister, and my husband and son are both Eagle Scouts, so this story was so wonderful to read! Thank you Ben for creating this beautiful memorial.

  • Kim Moen March 27, 2017 (8:05 am)

    Thank you Ben, I am the sister of Randy Terlicker and my husband and son are both Eagle Scouts as well. Thank you for helping to keep the memory of my brother and his fellow firefighters alive. It is a beautiful tribute. 

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