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Fighters of the Fire

Fighters of the Fire – 5:17 – As a pilot I’ve flown into the NYC airports more times than I can count. We even used to use the Vista Building in the WTC as our layover hotel. Thus, the events of 9-11 struck me very hard. I’ve flown those airplanes, and I’ve flown those routes. And I was in the USA when it happened – not a pleasant week.

Firefighters aren’t stupid. I truly believe they knew it was only a matter of time before the buildings came down. Yet they kept going back into it anyway, to bring people out.

The characters in the song are fictional, but the heroism is real.


Fighters of the Fire                                           ©2004 Dave Hadfield

Em                     D                   C                         Em
New York City Central on a perfect autumn day.
Em              D          C                      Bm
Eddy at his locker, putting things away.
A                  Em               A                         Bm
Eddy was a fireman, his shift was nearly through,
When the morning peace was shattered by a missile from the blue.

It only took a minute for the siren’s angry cry.
But no alarm was needed – every finger pointed high.
Near the end of Church St., the smoke was rising higher,
And every voice was calling for the fighters of the fire.

Em                    D     C                     Bm
Fighters of the fire, fighters of the fire,
“Every voice was calling for the fighters of the fire.”

Eddy had a partner: Thomas was his name.
For 7 years the 2 of them had entered smoke and flame.
Now they rode the pumper, but nothing seen before,
Was like that giant building on the 92th floor.

When they reached the firesite, the bullhorn made them run.
“There’re 15,000 people still inside – still to come,
“Start up on the 8th floor, work your way up higher.
“Now’s the time you need to shine, fighters of the fire.”

Nothing they had trained for prepared them for this day,
Hurt and frightened people getting in each other’s way.
Eddy stuck with Thomas, the way they’d always done.
And they brought a dozen people at a time into the sun.

Time and time again – they might’ve won with any luck.
They pushed and pulled and carried, ‘til the 2nd missile struck
All bets were off at that point – the situation dire
The glass was running empty for the fighters of the fire. [up]

[bridge]           They did not turn from the call…
When all the world saw it fall…   [slow]

New York City central on a perfect autumn day.
I’m standing here on Church St., where Tom and Eddy stay.
There’re people on the sidewalk, there’re taxis on the street
Not a thing unusual except the hole here at my feet.

How shall we remember those who didn’t count the cost?
How shall we remind ourselves of people we have lost?
More that just a tower, more than just a pyre,
No one is more worthy than a fighter of the fire. [chorus and end]