On August 24th, 2009, the City of Buffalo lost two members of its fire department during a building fire. In the days that followed, firefighters from across the country came to Buffalo to honor Firefighter Jonathan Croom and Lieutenant Chip McCarthy.
Members of the Washington, DC Fire Department's Pipes and Drums band played the funerals, and formed friendships with some of the Buffalo firefighters. At the time, Buffalo didn't have its own Pipes and Drums band, and shortly after, firefighters who worked with Croom and McCarthy formed what eventually became the Greater Buffalo Firefighters Pipes and Drums Band.
"I'm not Irish, I'm not Scottish. I'm a German kid from Polish Cheektowaga. And I'm playing the bagpipes. But it's because of what happened," explained band manager Michael Kick.