After the events of September 11, 2001, the Flint Hill Fire Department realized the need for a ceremonial honor guard to represent the department and others in the surrounding area in a professional and reverent manner for Line of Duty Deaths, firefighter funerals, and firefighter memorials, but also to provide services for invocations, parades, ceremonies, or other events. Shortly after September 11, 2002, the Flint Hill Fire Department membership voted to approve the founding of a department honor guard.
In 2002, with the assistance of Jim “Miami” Irwin (Charlotte Fire Department, ret), the Honor Guard was formed and organized. Charter members being Joe Cantrell, Jerry Chapman, Chris Cranford, Mike Davis, Jake Edwards, Matt Edwards, Brent Hucks, and JR McIntyre. Jerry Chapman was elected as the guard’s first coordinator and Mike Davis as the first assistant coordinator. It was decided that the guard would be operated in the same manner as the fire department regarding elections and voting. The first bylaws were drafted and accepted. The Flint Hill Fire Department Honor Guard was activated in late 2002.
The Flint Hill Honor Guard has an application process where unit candidates are screened and voted on by the current members of the guard. Members of the guard must be member firefighters of the department and are required to serve an initial three year term of service and may stay on for any length of time following the three year commitment.
The Honor Guard has performed at such events as invocations for the Carolina Panthers football team, Charlotte Bobcats and Charlotte Sting basketball teams and Charlotte Knights AAA baseball team. The guard has also marched in various parades around the area and presented colors at other events such as the South Carolina Fire Chiefs Association meetings, York County Fire Chiefs Association Banquet, York County Volunteer Recognition Day at Knight’s Stadium and several local churches. The Honor Guard has had the distinct honor and privilege to perform colors presentation, casket watch, and the folding of the National Colors at the funerals of several fellow firefighters. Annually the guard participates in the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weekend at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland.
Current Honor Guard Commander is Mike Davis. He can be reached at (803) 448-7670 for information or requests.