Today, May 4, 2021, is International Firefighter's Day. Celebrate with this short video featuring Bob Grant's photos of Grand Junction firefighters from the 1940s to the 1970s.

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The Story Behind the Holiday

According to

International Firefighters’ Day (IFFD) is a time where the world’s community can recognise and honour the sacrifices that firefighters make to ensure that their communities and environment are as safe as possible. It is also a day in which current and past firefighters can be thanked for their contributions.

The Video at Top

The video above was built using photos by late Daily Sentinel photographer Robert Grant. Photos featured in the video were taken in the Grand Junction during the decades spanning the 1940s to the 1970s.

Do You See Anyone You Know?

Look closely and you'll probably see someone you recognize. The opening shot includes Grand Junction's R.T. Mantlow.

Somewhere in the photo at 2:45 would be the recently retired Grand Junction firefighter Mike Gazdak.

The images at 2:54 include my own father. He wasn't a firefighter. He was the owner of A-1 Muffler on 5th Street in Grand Junction. At some point in the late 1960s, the building caught fire.

How to Show Gratitude on International Firefighter's Day

You can show firefighters your gratitude by proudly wearing and displaying blue and red ribbons pinned together.

Why Blue and Red Ribbons?

According to, the IFFD ribbons are linked to colors symbolic of the main elements firefighters work with – red for fire and blue for water. These colors also are internationally recognized as representing emergency service.

A big "thank you" to the generations of firefighters serving Western Colorado. Your work is greatly appreciated.

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