The Kentucky Fire Commission will be escorting families of fallen firefighters from across the state to the 34th Annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Activities will be held October 2-5 at the memorial located on the campus of the National Fire Academy.

Each year the trip is bittersweet, said Ronnie Day, executive director of the Kentucky Fire Commission. Every family is a reminder of a firefighter who sacrificed their life to protect another.

This year four new families and two returning families will be traveling with the Kentucky Fire Commission to the national memorial. In the past 30 years the Kentucky Fire Commission has escorted more than 100 Kentucky families on the 10-hour trip to experience the memorial first-hand. Each family member will have the opportunity to participate in activities with other fallen firefighter families, including support groups and a candlelight service.

Eighty-four firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2014 and three firefighters who died in previous years will be honored on Sunday, October 4. Each family will be presented with an American flag that has flown over the U.S. Capitol in honor of their loved one.

The national Fallen Firefighter Memorial was erected in 1981. It was officially designated in 1990 by the United States Congress as the National Memorial to career and volunteer fallen firefighters.