SENECA, Mo. — They may be gone, but they’ll never be forgotten.

That was the message at a special ceremony tonight to mark the public opening of a fallen firefighter memorial in Seneca.

“It’s a labor of love. It’s something we did for them,” said Lauri Rogers, Seneca Fire Auxiliary VP.

And at a special ceremony Saturday evening, that “labor of love” opened to the public.

Rogers says the idea for a firefighter’s memorial at the Seneca Fire Department started about seven years ago.

“All of the firefighters, the wives, people that just knew about it came in, and we did it all on our own,” said Kendra Crow, Seneca Fire Auxiliary President.

But that’s not a complaint.

“We could have paid thousands of dollars to have it done, we wanted to do it. We wanted to honor them and do it ourselves,” said Rogers.

The memorial currently names six firefighters from across the Four States, each of whom lost their lives in the line of duty over the last twenty years.

“These guys were being forgotten. The only time they were being remembered was when an anniversary came up,” said Rogers.

“Even though they’re gone, they’re never forgotten,” said Chief Tyler Crow, Seneca Fire Department.

Seneca Fire Chief Tyler Crow says while he never met the six fallen firefighters, they’re still family.

“Just because we didn’t know them doesn’t mean we won’t show our love for them,” said Tyler Crow.

He hopes this sends a strong message to firefighters everywhere.

“Just know that once you’re in the brotherhood, you’re always in the brotherhood. We will never forget,” said Tyler Crow.

For the six fallen firefighters whose names adorn the memorial, being forgotten will never again be a problem.

“Even though they’re not here anymore, they are our families,” said Rogers.