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Chicago,  IL
DAY 55
Friday,  August 30
click photo to enlarge
From: Madison WI
Total Distance: 147 miles
Estimated Total Time: 3 hours

Holiday Inn-Downtown
506 West Harrison Strreet

Fire Academy
558 West DeKoven Street

Chief Steve Chikerotis, Assistant Training Director
John S. McKillop, Assistant Training Director
Michael G. Kovac, Coordinator-Engineer training

Chicago FD Engine 1
419 South Wells

Chicago PD Headquarters
1601 South Hallstead Street

We vigorously arrived in the windy city. Being in Chicago really felt like we were on our way to making it in time to NYC for September 11th. This was the biggest metropolitan location we had been in since Seattle. We were definitely back east, and across the plains. It appeared we had just retraced the migration west in a backwards kind of way.

We checked into our hotel, and contacted the FD about the location to which we would be bringing the banner to. Our first visit was with the Fire Academy. This was an awesome place, and full of firefighting history. This building was actually built on the old grounds of the Mrs. O’Leary’s barn legend, where the cow kicked the bucket that started the great Chicago fire. We also had the chance to speak with several Chiefs about there assistance in NYC after 9/11.

The Academy made arrangements for us to go over to a busy FD across town, where we were welcome to have dinner. This was a fulltime firehouse with plenty of activity going on. We were engaged in some extensive, and in depth conversation about what took place at Ground Zero with firefighters that spent many, many hours on “the pile”.

On the way back to the hotel room, Paige wanted to visit a police department, so we did. And this was also an amazing experience. After we made it through the safe guard clearance, we were asked to bring a section of the banner in so that they could sign it.