KGW News: "Portland Fire Fighters Pipes and Drums Band Is Thriving"
A little over two years ago, when our band was just getting started, KGW came to the Portland Firefighters Association union hall and did a story about what we were attempting to accomplish. On Wednesday October 13, 2021, they came back to our rehearsal for a follow up piece. We were excited to show them our progress.
In the last two years, we've gone from one bagpiper to eleven, and the band is a full twenty members strong (and counting). In the time since our first public performance on Memorial Day of this year, we've had dozens of performances including three first responder Line of Duty Death services, firefighter funerals, the 20 year 9/11 memorial, multiple fallen firefighter memorial ceremonies, and a few other public events.
Thank you Katherine, Jon and KGW for such a thoughtful piece that helps us share our story, our traditions and our music.
Memorial Day Concert 2021, Portland VA Hospital
On May 31, 2021 PFFPD played our first public concert with the full band. It marked the start of a new chapter for us. We have been rehearsing for nearly two and a half years, finding creative ways to stay productive during the pandemic. Many of our musicians had never played an instrument prior to January 2019, when they picked up a chanter or pair of drum sticks for the first time. Fortunately, we have been guided and mentored by some of the best instructors in the world.
To say this is a labor of love is an understatement. It's also a labor of honor, sacrifice and camaraderie. Thousands of hours with the support of our families and coworkers, all in pursuit of a common goal: doing everything in our power to honor fallen heroes.
Memorial Day represents the core values of our band and our efforts. We are proud and humbled that our first performance was in tribute to our American heroes, while showing support to veterans at the hospital and the staff that works so hard to keep them healthy.
We often discuss our band as something "bigger than the sum of its parts". Much like a fire department. Or a nation. We are proud of what we are building as a group, and hope you enjoy the music. Much more to come, as we are just getting started...
Moment of Silence
The Bells of Dunblane
The Green Hills of Tyrol
When the Battle's O'er
Scotland the Brave
The Rowan Tree
(Video courtesy of Portland Fire and Rescue)
2020 Year In Review
Our mission is simple, honoring the sacrifice of emergency service personnel everywhere through traditional Scottish Pipes & Drums. The personal and professional challenges faced in 2020 left us undeterred in our commitment to this mission. We continue to strive daily through our efforts to improve the lives around us and recognize the responsibility we have been given.
During the recording of this tune by Portland Firefighters Pipes and Drums, two lambs were born in the pasture nearby. With every end comes a new beginning and the promise of a life worth living. As this year ends and the dawn of a new decade is upon us, the hope of a brighter tomorrow is felt by us all. To the Scottish poet Robert Burns, we say thank you. To our instructors, Gordon and Amy Convoy, Elie Shearer, and Lauren Toohey, we say thank you.