Binghamton Firefighters Honored

By WBNG News

July 22, 2010 Updated Jul 10, 2009 at 11:20 PM EDT

Two Binghamton firefighters were honored for their heroism last night in Utica.

Named firefighters of the Year for saving a 9-year old boy from a burning building.

Today, they were back in town.

Action News reporter Reed Buterbaugh caught up with one of those firefighters.

A man who is too humble to call himself a hero, even though everyone else is.

Last April Binghamton firefighter Brian Grace and John Shine responded to a house fire at 23 Eldredge Street.
Their acts of heroism earned them the honor of New York State firefighters of the year.

"As we got here the house was fully involved all three sides were on fire," Ret. Lieutenant Brian Grace.

Inside was a 9-year-old boy.

Grace and Shine entered the first floor of the home to save the boy'' life.

But, at first they couldn't find him.

"John and myself went back. John found him at the base of a bed or sofa," Grace said. "We were able to pull him out. With the medical people on the scene they were able to get him to upstate and within two weeks he was back home."

Besides being brave one of Grace's best qualities is how humble he is. Even after being named New York Firefighter of the year he still sees himself as just one of the guys.

"We knew that it was a team effort and we also know that if it wasn't engine 3 that was at the scene it was engine 2, or engine 1, or rescue. They would have done the same thing," Grace said.

Grace has since retired from the department.

But says he still misses the brotherhood and camaraderie.

Again, Shine and Grace were honored last night in Utica as Firefighters of the Year by the State's Professional Firefighters Association.

Next year's ceremony will be held in Binghamton.

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