The Chicago Fire Department dedicated the latest addition to its arsenal to one of its own, fallen firefighter Christopher Wheatley. The new boat is the first boat the fire department has purchased in 60 years. In a surprising coincidence, the vessel was built in Wheatley, Canada. The boat is nothing short of impressive. At 90 feet long and 228 tons it can break up to 12 inches of ice.
8/9/2011 marked the one year anniversary of when Christopher Wheatley made the ultimate sacrafice in the line of duty. The fallen 31-year-old firefighter/paramedic was carrying equipment up a fire escape when he fell to his death. Members of Wheatley’s company say he was a stand-out, just like the boat, and the honor is fitting. The dedication of a fire department apparatus is one of the highest acknowledgements that the fire department can bestow on an individual.
The city of Chicago will always miss Christopher Wheatley.