How to Create Your Own Fire Department Cross

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The Maltese firefighter cross is a symbol of courage and sacrifice. It is modelled after the ancient cross of the first firefighters, the knights of St. John, from the island of Malta. Today's firefighters wear the cross as a pledge to risk their lives to protect others.

With the permission of your own fire brigade membership, you can design and create a cross for the entire group. Studying the crosses of other departments will give you ideas of the images you want to include in your own symbol.

Draw or print out a line drawing of a Maltese cross. It would be wise to have several copies of the outline so you can practice your own drawing. Include the eight points that are a traditional part of the cross. The points are at each end of the top, bottom and two side pieces.

Draw the circular shape that is in the centre of the Maltese firefighter cross if you are creating this symbol freehand. This will give you the circle, one top, one bottom and two side pieces.

Stencil or sketch the words "FIRE DEPT" in capital letters on the cross. Include the official name of your company, which may be the municipality the department is located in. Use initials for a long name if appropriate. For example, the New York City fire brigade can be shortened to N.Y.C. Fire Dept, or N.Y. F.D. The words can be centred in one or two of the four small sections or the circular portion of the cross.

Draw a symbol that includes a personalised logo for your fire brigade in the centre circle. This can include a firefighter figure dressed in full gear, a scenic background and traditional tools of the department.

Colour in a copy of the complete image with pencils if it will be used to create a sign for the fire station.