PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A new fire station in Clark County is home to a special tribute to the men and women who risk their lives to save others.
Station 63 in Fire District 6 is located in a growing community where fire calls are on the rise. The $10-million station was completed in March of 2020 and serves communities north of Vancouver, including Salmon Creek, Hazel Dell, Felida and the Clark County Fairgrounds.
“When we built this station, it was a big station with nothing on the walls and we wanted to put something on the walls that represented what we do and just shows what our members are doing on a daily basis,” said Captain Clint Greeley.
The solution came to the 30-year veteran of Clark County Fire after a particular picture surfaced from the archives. The picture lost its resolution when the team tried to enlarge it. So Greeley offered to recreate it by painting it as a mural on an interior stairwell.
The captain said he’s been painting since he was a kid and is self-taught.
“Until he did the mock-up, I didn’t realize the level of skill he had but he truly brought this picture to life and it’s really great that it’s a part of our history,” said Clark County Fire District 6 Chief Kristin Maurer. “It really personalizes the station.”
Greeley and Maurer plan to invite the public inside Station 63 to see the tribute once the pandemic is no longer a concern.
“I’m excited for the community to see this mural because it truly is breathtaking,” said Maurer.
One aspect of the painting will differ from the photo to honor not just Clark County firefighters, but all firefighters. The number “409” on the firefighter’s bottle will be changed to “343.”
“And that represents the number of firefighters that died in the Twin Towers on 9/11,” said Greeley.
The three firefighters depicted in Greeley’s mural are now senior employees at Clark County Fire. They’ll get to see themselves immortalized in the mural when the finishing touches are put on it this week.