Four generations of Charleston firefighters keep tradition strong

Published: Feb. 7, 2023 at 7:12 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, Maine (WABI) - Firefighting in Charleston is a family affair - and there are big boots to fill.

Fighting fire is family at the Charleston Fire Department.

Four generations of Hansons, Ameros and Weymouths have donned the helmet in Charleston, and that continues with Alex Hanson and Katelyn Amaro, the team’s next batch of junior firefighters.

“I honestly just want to do this because it’s cool to keep it going on generation to generation,” junior firefighter Alex Hanson said.

“Firefighters have always had a close brotherhood, but when you have your physical family with you, there’s nothing but trust,” Lieutenant Brian Hanson (and Alex’s father) said.

“I lucked out, most of these generations that are in this department, I’ve either had a hand in, or trained personally,” Safety Officer (and Brian’s father) said.

The family connection holds even more value today.

“You’ve got to lean on family members right now to keep the small departments going,” Brian said. “The fact that we have three solid families that make up a core part of this department, if we didn’t have that, we wouldn’t have the numbers that we have.”

The interest came naturally for Alex.

“It’s really cool to hear from them that they just went out on a call, and they describe it, it just feels really cool to do,” Alex said.

“When you get somebody who’s new on the department, you just see the interest sparks,” Brian said. “It’s more fun training somebody, than I feel like actually doing it live.”

As for a grandfather’s advice...

“Pay attention to what’s going on, do what’s right. If you have problems, ask,” Shaun said.

Alex certainly won’t have to look far for support.