Carolina Brotherhood stops in Wilmington to honor fallen firefighter

Empie Park station unveiled their statue dedicated to Eric Lacewell, Tuesday evening. (Photo: Monique Robinson/WWAY)

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — More than 60 men and women arrived at the Wilmington’s Fire Department Station 2 Tuesday afternoon in honor of the fallen firefighters across the Carolinas.

Over the next six days, the Carolina Brotherhood will ride more than 600 miles in remembrance of and solidarity for first responders we’ve lost over the years.

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The almost week-long trip across the Carolinas began in Windsor and includes stops in Wilmington, Goldsboro, Marion, Lancaster and Greenville. Back in 2012, the Carolina Brotherhood was created to support families who lost loved ones in the line of duty.

Wilmington Deputy Fire Chief J.S. Mason says he made it a point to stop at Empie Park Fire Station for the Capt. Eric Lacewell Memorial dedication.

A mix of tears, laughs and love at the dedication as family, friends and community members remembered Lacewell. He is one of the eight firefighters who have died in the line of duty in Wilmington.

Lacewell has been recognized as one of the most successful firefighters in Wilmington. A monumental boots and hat statue now stands at the Empie Park station in remembrance of him.

His wife Sheila Lacewell was presented a flag and badge on behalf of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation for her husband’s sacrifice.

“My husband wanted to be a firefighter for the longest time,” his wife said. “When this opportunity came up for him to join the Wilmington firefighters, he went and applied for the job then came home like ‘Babe, I made it.'”

Lacewell served his community as President of the Wilmington chapter of Professional Black Firefighters and was head of United Way in Wilmington. He died in November 2014 following complications after a fall in 2011.