Fire service professionals spend a lot of time safeguarding human life and property. These individuals have likely witnessed many dangerous circumstances and probably have lost some of their own station mates in the performance of their duties. When retirement approaches it is customary to provide appropriate gifts to commemorate their many years of service of protection. The intent of this gift is simply to pay sincere respect to the individual who has given so many years of their life.
This axe blade itself is made from bronze, is normally full-sized and will often have the retiring person's logo displayed on the handle. These axes will usually have display plaques on them which indicate the retiring person's name, rank, station name and his or her years of service. The axe itself is full sized. Sometimes the axe blade is made out of gold as well several other types of precious metal.
Firefighter's Maltese Cross
The Maltese Cross is the universal symbol to fire servicemen and women, which signifies protection. It further says that the individual was always willing to lay down his or her life for their fellow man.
Some ideas for how to present the Maltese Cross are to have the design drawn into a plaque, and have a personalised message for the retiring person. It can display their name, their rank, their station name and their years of service.
"The American Fireman" Lithograph (Currier and Ives)
This lithograph is of a lone fire service employee, c. 1858, actively extinguishing a fire. The print itself is well known and is a charming representation of the field of fire safety. The lithograph can be mounted on a plaque with the retiring individual's name, rank and station displayed.
Antique Leather Fire Helmet
This type of gift can be extremely ornate and will often hold its value, thereby being quite valuable to antique collectors. Its colour will usually indicate the rank and assignment of the retiring person and often includes a leather or brass shield holder, often in various animal shapes. It can be mounted for display purposes, with a plaque on the mount indicating name, station name and years of service.