Engine Company, Firefighting

Dr. Don Cannon, Noted Fire Historian, Dies

It is with deep regret that we announce the passing of Dr. Donald Cannon, noted fire historian. He leaves behind his wife, Delia, and 18 year old son, Peter.

Don was a history professor at Saint Peter’s College in New Jersey and an adjunct fire science professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. At John Jay, he taught a course entitled “Fire in New York,” which traced the history of fire and firefighting in New York City. He joined Yonkers (NY) Fire Department Auxiliary in 1962, became chief in 1975, served with the Rockaway Point Fire Department in Queens, New York., was a 1960s Bronx FDNY Auxiliary, and was with the Midway (SC) Fire Department. At the time of his death, he was a volunteer EMT-B with the Glen Ridge (NJ) Ambulance Squad.  

Don is perhaps best known for his classic book,  Heritage of Flames, published in 1977.  It traced the history of firefighting in America from the 17th century through the beginning of the 19th century. He most recently authored the chapter on fire service history in the recently released Fire Engineering’s Handbook for Firefighter I and II.   

Funeral arrangements are as follows:


Tuesday, April 6th
2 pm -4 pm, 7 pm – 9 pm
O’Boyle Funeral Home
309 Broad St, Bloomfield, NJ 07003
(973) 748-1246

Wednesday, April 7th
10:00 am
St. Peter Claver Roman Catholic Church
56 Elmwood Avenue
Montclair, New Jersey 07042