PALATINE, Ill. (CBS) — Forty-seven years after three volunteer firefighters died in the line of duty, they were remembered in Palatine on Sunday.

The Palatine Fire Department held a memorial ceremony Sunday morning at the Firefighters Memorial at Brockway and Slade streets in downtown Palatine.

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In the ceremony, the Palatine Fire Honor Guard marched from Station 85 to the memorial, where a wreath was presented and a ceremonial fire bell was rung.

The memorial honors firefighters John Wilson, Richard Freeman, and Warren Ahlgrim – who all died in an early-morning fire at a Ben Franklin store on Feb. 23, 1973.

The fire started in the retail store and spread throughout the building. The firefighters died while working in the basement.

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Palatine Fire Chief Scott Andersen said it is important to remember their sacrifice.

“Every year, we lose about 100 firefighters nationwide, and we actually have a dry-erase board in each station where we put that person’s name on and a little detail about what happened, and then we talk about it – so we try not to repeat that,” Andersen said.

Palatine has lost five firefighters in the history of the department.

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The memorial statue actually looks over the nearby train crossing where two other firefighters were killed when their engine was struck by a train back in 1946.