It is a sad day when a department loses one of its own. That’s why so many fire stations around the country have started their own traditions. They create custom challenge coins in the firefighter’s honor and hand them out at his or her memorial service. This allows people in the community to take part in a celebration of the fallen department member’s life and also to recognize his or her heroic and selfless nature.
Memorial coins are extremely personal. They often feature a photographic image of the firefighter being honored. The way that these coins are created is by using a process called offset printing. This allows an exact copy of the photograph to be used without altering its appearance. Offset printed coins have an epoxy dome placed over them to protect the photograph. This gives them a glossy finish and also ensures that they look new despite being handled year after year.
Black velvet bags and boxes are often the presentation option of choice at memorial services because they are classic. They enhance the appearance of the coins and provide recipients with a safe place to keep them. Challenge coins are often displayed in a person’s home or office. In the case of a fallen firefighter, a special coin may be kept in the fire station as a way to remind others to strive for excellence.
Custom challenge coins mean many different things because they are rich in symbolism. They have a distinct appearance and certain weightiness about them. This gives recipients of the coin the impression that they are being given a gift with value. They also have come to associate challenge coins with the following characteristics:
Therefore, having a custom challenge coin created for a fallen firefighter is the ultimate display of affection. Friends and family members have something relevant and memorable to hold onto and people in the community are reminded of the hardworking men and women that make up the fire department in their towns and counties.