Citizens Fire Academy of Lufkin partners with Lufkin High School Drafting students to design ceremonial bell

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - The Lufkin Fire Department's Honor Guard is one step closer to getting their own ceremonial brass bell.

The Citizens Fire Academy of Lufkin partnered with the Lufkin High School drafting class and those students rose to the challenge.

For three months they have been designing the perfect bell and Monday they presented their work for the first time.

The idea was born out of wanting to have a way to celebrate the history of fire fighters past and now it will forever be a symbol of honor, pride and tradition for the Lufkin Fire Department Honor Guard.

"It's something they do not have," said Citizens Fire Academy, Vice President, Andrew Ray. "They have borrowed but they do not have one of their own."

But that's about to change, thanks to a group of drafting students from Lufkin High School who took the job of designing the departments ceremonial bell seriously.

"We needed detailed drafting specs and it was an idea to bring the local high school into it for community service," said Ray.

"Most of the time we would just be learning stuff and it would be proactive but this is real world. We actually get to put something forward," said drafting class junior, Richard Galan.

The design was a collaboration among the drafting students, one that took a lot of thought while utilizing a lot of symbolism.

"It's going to remain a symbol and an idea and it's the embodiment of the hope and pride the community has in its servicemen and that outlives all of us and it's sort of bigger than everybody," said Galan.

The students even incorporated Morse code on the bell which represents the 5-5-5 ring that is used at the memorial service when an active fire fighter is killed in the line of duty.

"This bell is going to outlive all of us," Galan.

The bell and the brass have been donated by Texas Bell Works out of Huntington.

The next step is for any changes to the design to be made then it will be sent off to the caster. The plan is for the existing bell to be melted down and recast and customized with this unique design.

The Citizens Fire Academy of Lufkin supports the Lufkin Fire Department by raising funds and can be called out to hydrate and rehab the fire fighters when they're out working a fire call.

The academy is accepting donations and raising funds to complete their bell project.

Donations can be mailed or brought to:

111 S. 3rd Street, Lufkin, TX

c/o Lufkin City Fire Academy

Copyright 2014 KTRE. All rights reserved.