The dignified portraits of courageous volunteer firefighters who risk it all to save lives

Written By: Daily Mail Reporter | Posted On: January 12, 2013

These are the  quietly dignified portraits of volunteers who put their lives on the line every time a fire bell rings out.

Volunteer firefighters make up 70 per cent of firefighters in the U.S. – around 768,150 men and women who give up their time to save lives and rescue  homes. 

From the late  veteran firefighter Charles G. ‘Jerry’ Saeger who served decades with Hastings  Fire Department, New York to Daniel Mansdrof who signed up to the same unit aged  18, the shots capture unsung heroes across the U.S.

The collection was  shot by renowned photographer Ian Spanier. His broad spectrum of work encompasses American  landscapes and portraits including musician Stephen Marley, the cast of Jersey  Shore and Steve Tyler.

The portraits have  been published in a book written by Marek Fuchs, journalist and volunteer  firefighter, entitled Local Heroes:  Portraits of Volunteer Firefighters.


Unsung hero: The late Charles G. Saeger, known as Jerry, was with the Hastings  fire department in New York first as captain and later as chairman

Fearless: Daniel Mansdrof first volunteered in Hastings when he was 18 years old  before joining the department in Charleston, South Carolina

Local Heroes (firefighter portraits) All photos must be credited (c) Ian  Spanier Photography 2012 and words by Marek Fuchs-and link to

Telling their stories: Journalist and volunteer firefighter Marek Fuchs who is  behind the book Local Heroes


Saving lives: Andrew Sherman is a Jewish volunteer firefighter who first fought a fire during Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year

By my side: Chief Michael Scott in full firefighting gear and loyal companion  Max the dog

Risking it all: Assistant Chief Marlo Chapple, with the Sparta/Hancock fire  department in Georgia

Life-saver: Randy Burke at his truck with the jaws of life

Heroics: Will Webster is a volunteer firefighter with the Sparta Fire Department  in Georgia

Paying it back: Devoris Lamar began volunteering in Sparta after his family lost  their home in a blaze

Protector: Former Chief Robert C. Allison is renowned for facing the most  dangerous of fires with no fear

Ready at all times: Chris DiBenedetto works as a firefighter in Greenwich  Village, New York City and volunteers in Hastings in his spare time

Fighting the flames: John Petas, who volunteers with the Hastings brigade, also  handles financial matters at the firehouse


All photos must be credited (c) Ian  Spanier Photography 2012 and words by Marek Fuchs-and link to

Daily Mail Reporter (30 Dec 2012) Retrieved from: