EDCO's Top 10 Firefighter Awards Ideas: Recognizing Bravery | Edco Awards
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Honoring Bravery: Your Comprehensive Guide to Firefighter Awards Ideas

 Crystal Maltese Cross Award - Red Prism  Crystal Maltese Cross Award  Maltese Cross Fireman Award  Firefighter Acrylic Shield Award  Crystal Axe Trophy  Patriot Eagle Award  Firefighter Glass Plaque  Walnut Maltese Cross Plaque  Fireman Tribute Statue  Fireman Sculpture

Firefighters are the unsung heroes of our communities. They’re people who risk their lives every day to ensure the safety of those around them. Recognizing and formally acknowledging their bravery, dedication, and selflessness is not just a gesture — it’s a necessity.

Awards serve as both a tangible representation of communal gratitude and a symbol of honor for their service.

At EDCO awards, we’re passionate about recognizing stand-out members of the community for over half a century. Incorporated in 1969, we’ve supplied custom awards, trophies, and plaques to communities nationwide, always crafted from premium materials.

From the iconic Maltese cross to the majestic soaring eagle, each award style tells its own story. Take a look at this comprehensive collection of firefighter awards ideas to honor the heroes in your community.

The Symbolism Behind Firefighter Awards

To choose the right awards for your firefighters, it helps to first understand the history and significance behind these awards.

Firefighting is a profession rooted in tradition, valor, and sacrifice. The awards designed for firefighters are more than just mere tokens of appreciation; they carry deep symbolic meanings that manifest the core values of the firefighting community.

Beyond acknowledging the outstanding service of each firefighter, awards also serve as a reminder of the sacrifices they’ve made and the challenges they’ve overcome. For firefighters, awards are more than just pieces of metal and crystal — they’re a testament to the bravery, dedication, and commitment needed to save lives.

These awards are a recognition that the firefighter’s efforts — usually made in the face of grave danger — do not go unnoticed.

History and Meaning Behind Firefighter Symbols

Each symbol associated with firefighter awards has a rich history and meaning.

Maltese Cross Trophy

The Maltese cross has been a famous symbol for centuries. It originates with the Knights of Malta — also known as the Knights Hospitaller — a medieval Catholic military order that was founded in 1048 and is still active today. The Knights of Malta left military life to become a charitable organization dedicated to providing aid to the most vulnerable.

The Maltese cross has four arms, which symbolize the cardinal virtues of prudence, temperance, justice, and fortitude. At the end of each arm are V-shaped notches, creating eight points around the cross.

These eight points symbolize the Beatitudes from Saint Matthew’s Gospel, as well as the eight virtues that a member of the Sovereign Order of Malta must possess, which include:

  • Loyalty
  • Piety
  • Honesty
  • Honor and glory
  • Contempt for death
  • Solidarity toward the poor and sick
  • Respect for the Church
  • Courage

The Knights of Malta would use the capes off their backs to put out fires, which is how the cross has become associated with firefighters today.

Fireman’s Axe Award

The fireman’s axe is perhaps more “on-the-nose” than the Maltese cross since the axe is a regular tool of the trade for firefighters. It’s a symbol of how a firefighter is always ready and able to break through barriers — both physical and metaphorical — to save those in need.

This long-standing icon of firefighting dates back to the early 1800s. Today, the axe serves as a decorative emblem usually displayed on uniforms, patches, collectibles, and other items.

Firefighter Shield Award

The Firefighter Acrylic Shield Award symbolizes the protective and barrier-breaking nature inherent in the firefighting profession. This shield, much like the axe, represents the courage and steadfast commitment firefighters demonstrate in their duty to safeguard the community. Together, these emblems capture the essence of bravery and resilience that define the spirit of firefighting

Fireman Trophy Sculpture

The fireman sculpture is a style designed to portray firefighters as heroes who save lives. Fireman sculptures come in the form of figurines or sculptural monuments designed to represent and honor firefighters in action.

Soaring Eagle Award

The symbol of the eagle began being associated with firefighters in the early 1800s. The origins of this symbol are associated with a commemorative sculpture made by an unnamed artist on a volunteer firefighter’s grave.

The sculpture showed a heroic fireman walking triumphantly out of the flames with a sleeping baby in one hand and a trumpet in the other. On the fireman’s hat was an eagle.

Firefighters quickly adapted the imagery and began wearing eagles on their helmets. The eagle is still associated with firefighters today.

Fire Truck Trophy

The fire truck is another tool of the trade that provides an iconic representation of the firefighting profession. When used in commemorative imagery, the fire truck represents teamwork, readiness, and the collective effort of a fire department.

What’s important to note is that the symbols used for firefighter awards are not random; rather, they’re chosen representations of the values, traditions, and history of the firefighting community.

Factors to Consider When Choosing the Right Firefighter Award

Selecting an award for a firefighter is about more than just picking a trophy off the shelf. Instead, awards are about recognizing and honoring the immense bravery, dedication, and sacrifice that these unsung heroes display every day.

Therefore, the award should resonate with its recipient, making them feel seen, valued, and appreciated. Here are some crucial factors to consider when choosing the perfect, personalized firefighter award.

Purpose of Award

First, what’s the purpose of the award? Are you recognizing a specific act of bravery? Retirement? Outstanding leadership?

Pinpointing the reason for recognition will help guide your selection process.


A personalized award carries far more weight than a generic one. Choose awards that allow for custom engravings or inscriptions, so you can include the firefighter’s name and a brief description of the achievement. This will help make the award truly special.

Material and Craftsmanship

The quality of the award makes all the difference. Opt for durable materials, like crystals. The craftsmanship should reflect the importance of the occasion.


Firefighting is a profession rich in symbols, like the Maltese cross and the eagle. Choose awards that incorporate these symbols, since they carry a lot of weight within the firefighting community and will help convey a sense of shared identity and pride.

Size and Display

Consider where the award might be displayed. A desk award can be on the smaller side, while a wall plaque or trophy is better suited for public spaces.

Cultural and Departmental Traditions

Some fire departments have their own specific traditions or cultural nuances, so this should be taken into consideration when selecting awards.

Crystal Maltese Cross Awards

EDCO’s Crystal Maltese Cross Award with Red Prism (CRY468) is a masterpiece that beautifully captures the essence of the Maltese cross and everything it represents.

It’s the ideal gift to commemorate an outstanding firefighter’s — or an entire fire department’s — bravery and excellence. Meticulously crafted, this award showcases a classic Maltese cross design set upon a vibrant red crystal base.

This award comes with custom engraving options so that it can be personalized and distinctive for each recipient. The award is eight inches tall and seven inches wide and weighs four pounds, providing a feel of sturdiness and luxury.

At just a little over $100, this crystal Maltese cross award costs significantly less than competitors’ versions priced at $350 and up, all without compromising quality.

Other Variations

Other Maltese cross-award variations include:

The Maltese cross is a popular award item due to its long history and deep-rooted symbolism. Reward your brave fire service members with a gift equal to their outstanding contributions!

Crystal Maltese Cross Awards

EDCO’s Crystal Axe Trophy is a stunning representation of the fireman’s axe, which has been an iconic staple in firefighting for decades. Carefully crafted from optical crystal, this award is more than just a trophy — it’s an elegant symbol of the remarkable courage and selflessness exhibited by firefighters every day on the job.

The precision and attention to detail in this design make it quite the standout piece, perfect for honoring the courage, dedication, and bravery of individual firefighters or departments.

The Crystal Axe Trophy comes with custom engraving options for full personalization, ensuring its messaging resonates deeply with its recipient.

Another variation of the ax award is the acrylic version, a beautiful, thick acrylic plaque shaped like an ax.

Honoring Bravery: The Firefighter Acrylic Shield Award

The Firefighter Acrylic Shield Award by EDCO stands as an exceptional symbol of recognition, specifically designed to honor the valor and commitment of firefighters. Crafted with meticulous attention to detail, this award not only embodies the spirit of courage inherent in firefighting but also serves as a tangible expression of appreciation for the relentless bravery these heroes display. Its unique design and quality craftsmanship make it a distinguished choice for acknowledging the extraordinary efforts of firefighters in any community.

Fireman Sculpture Variations

Fireman sculptures are a profound way to honor the service of firefighters because they represent the essence of their heroism.

Fireman Sculpture

This classic 12-inch tall sculpture, adorned with an antique bronze finish, is a lovely testament to firefighters. The detailing conveys the spirit of firefighters in action, showcasing their strength and dedication.

Gifting the Fireman Sculpture will provide firefighters with a constant reminder of the sacrifices they make and the challenges they overcome. This award can serve as an ideal gift to honor many years of service, a commemoration of bravery during a particular event, or a retirement gift to commemorate a firefighter’s service.

Fireman Tribute Statue

The Fireman Tribute Statue is a gold-toned statue depicting a firefighter holding an axe and standing tall. The design showcases the readiness and determination it takes to be a firefighter.

This statue recognizes a firefighter’s unwavering commitment and bravery. It stands out as a symbol of respect and admiration, which makes it an ideal award for special achievements or milestones.

Firefighter Glass Plaque

The Firefighter Glass Plague is a unique gift that features a classic six-inch tall glass plaque combined with an eight-inch bronze figurine of a firefighter, hose and axe in hand. The glass plaque slides in and out of the wooden base, offering a canvas for logos, images, or personal messages.

This versatile gift can be tailored to any occasion, whether you’re honoring a promotion, a special rescue, or years of service. Adding a laser-etched personal touch will make it all the more special.

Fireman With Child Sculpture

Standing 11.5 inches tall, the Fireman With Child Sculpture captures a heartwarming moment: a firefighter carrying a child. The antique bronze finish has a hint of deep red, which adds to the depth and luxury of the sculpture.

Overall, this is a perfect gift for those who’ve showcased exceptional courage and bravery in saving lives, especially those of children.

Fireman Recognition Award

A stunning silver-and-gold-toned piece, the Fireman Recognition Award depicts a firefighter with a hose, ready for action. The black plate at the base offers space for personal messages, so you can make this piece one to remember.

This gift recognizes those who’ve demonstrated exemplary skills and bravery in the face of challenging rescues. It’s a fitting award for acts of heroism or other special achievements.

Fireman Bobble Head

For a light-hearted way to appreciate firefighters, there is the 5.5-inch Fireman Bobble Head. It adds a touch of humor and fun to appreciation ceremonies, capturing the fighting spirit of firefighters playfully.

This is an ideal gift for events or ceremonies where a touch of humor is appropriate. It’s a reminder that amidst the challenges, it’s important to find reasons to laugh.

Fireman on Roof Sculpture

Crafted from cast resin, this 13-inch tall Fireman on Roof Sculpture depicts a firefighter on a roof, which signifies the challenges firefighters face every day on the job.

This is a beautiful piece with an antique dry brush technique for a touch of vintage elegance.

The sculpture conveys an air of seriousness, as it symbolizes the weight of responsibilities firefighters bear. It’s an ideal award for recognizing acts of bravery, special accomplishments, or years of service on the frontlines at retirement.

Soaring Eagle Awards

The eagle is a symbol of the American spirit for good reason. With their keen eyesight and powerful flight, eagles are a symbol of vision, leadership, and strength.

Patriot Eagle Award

The Patriot Eagle Award captures the essence of this American spirit. It depicts a majestic eagle, brushed in bronze, perched upon a full-color American flag and gazing sharply out into the distance. This award also comes with a customizable glass plaque.

This award honors firefighters who show dedication and patriotism and serves as a reminder of their commitment to not only their community but also to their country.

Gliding Eagle Black Crystal Award

The Gliding Eagle Black Crystal Award shows an eagle mid-flight as a symbol of freedom, determination, and strength. It also comes with a black crystal base, which adds an element of elegance and sophistication.

This crystal award recognizes firefighters who have demonstrated both resilience and determination when faced with adversity on the job.

Grand Eagle Crystal Award

A beautiful transparent crystal piece, the Grand Eagle Crystal Award features an eagle sculpted with meticulous detail, wings spread wide, ready to take flight. Elevated upon a crystal base that reflects the light, this award is sure to be a centerpiece of any collection.

Give this award to firefighters who have consistently gone above and beyond.

Leadership Eagle Award

As the name suggests, the Leadership Eagle Award is all about recognizing leadership. This award depicts an eagle perched high and looking forward, which symbolizes vision, foresight, and leadership.

This is an ideal gift for fire department leaders or anyone who has taken charge during a challenging situation.

Regal Flight Crystal Eagle Award

The Regal Flight Eagle Award is a breathtaking piece designed to capture the essence of an eagle in the middle of regal, majestic flight. It’s sculpted entirely from clear crystal and stands atop a crystal base. The mirrored pedestal reflects the light in a captivating way.

This award is more than just a trophy. It’s perfect for recognizing the efforts of individuals who have soared to new heights in their positions. The clear crystal symbolizes clarity of vision and purpose, so it’s a great piece to give leaders or visionaries on the team.

Soaring Crystal Eagle Award

The Soaring Crystal Eagle Award is composed of a full 24% lead crystal and stands at an impressive 10 inches in height. This award is fitting for individuals who have displayed exceptional leadership qualities by successfully guiding their teams.

Whether you’re honoring a milestone achievement or a significant contribution, this award symbolizes hard work and dedication.

Ferocity Eagle Award

The Ferocity Eagle Award is a representation of power and fierce determination. This piece features a classic bronze finish and an impressive 15-inch wing span.

If you know a firefighter who demonstrates a relentless pursuit of excellence, determination, and tenacity, then this is the perfect gift for them!

Royal Crystal Eagle Award

The Royal Crystal Eagle Award conveys an air of elegance and regality. This award features an eagle with wings spread wide.

Ideal for individuals who showcase exceptional leadership qualities, this award serves as an acknowledgment of the recipient’s ability to lead with vision and purpose.

Achievement Eagle Award

The Achievement Eagle Award features a resin-casted eagle with a bronze finish elevated atop a rosewood piano-finish base. The black plate on the base offers space for personalized congratulatory messaging displayed in bright gold lettering.

Give this gift when celebrating milestones and significant achievements.

American Eagle Award

At 12 inches tall, the American Eagle Award features a hand-painted eagle sculpture mounted on an oval base. Opt for this gift for individuals who have shown dedication by making significant contributions to their team or community.

Courage Eagle Award

The Courage Eagle Award represents bravery and determination. This is a bronze-finished eagle sculpture with impressive detailing.

Use this award when recognizing and honoring individuals who show bravery and courage when faced with challenges or adversity.

Sky Master Eagle Award

The Sky Master Eagle Award stands 18 inches tall, making it quite a strong, prominent award. It’s a great gift to give in celebration of exceptional foresight and vision, especially for leaders and visionaries.

Challenge Eagle Award

The Challenge Eagle is a captivating piece featuring a crystal eagle upon a smooth black glass base.

Firefighters often face challenges that demand that they rise above and beyond. This award is a fitting tribute to those who have faced challenges head-on with bravery and determination and emerged victorious. It also serves as a symbol of perseverance, making it a meaningful award for those who show steadfastness in their line of duty.

Eros Flight Eagle

Capturing the glory of an eagle in flight, the Eros Flight Eagle has an expansive wing span and gold brass finish. This award symbolizes the flight of the eagle, which is associated with vision and ambition.

This gift suits those who set high professional standards for themselves in the workplace. It serves as recognition of their ambition and ability to rise above challenges.

Soaring Eagle Rosewood EOM

While most of these awards are perfect for individual recognition, the Soaring Eagle Rosewood EOM is ideal for honoring entire departments or units.

This beautiful plaque is made from piano-finished rosewood. It features a silver eagle with wings outstretched and claws reaching. The shiny black metal plates can be custom engraved with names and award titles.

With this piece, you can also get replacement plates, allowing for new team names or individual honorees to be added over time.

Fire Truck Awards

The fire engine symbolizes the heartbeat of the firefighting brigade since fire trucks play a pivotal role in every rescue mission. The fire truck represents more than a vehicle; it’s a symbol of hope, resilience, and a commitment to saving lives.

Classic Fire Engine Trophy

The Classic Fire Engine Trophy is a great way to capture the iconic fire engine. These trophies are crafted with careful attention to detail, featuring a fire engine atop a marble base. These trophies also come with custom imprinted plates so that you can add a personal message to them.

This trophy is a tribute to the firefighting spirit. It recognizes firefighters who have showcased bravery, quick thinking, and teamwork in the line of duty. Whether you’re acknowledging a milestone achievement or a significant contribution, this trophy will serve as a testament to the strength of the firefighter’s character.

Celebrating Heroes With EDCO

There are many factors to consider when choosing the best awards for your firefighters, from the symbolism behind the awards to their purpose. EDCO can provide for all of your firefighter award needs. With EDCO, you’re not just choosing an award; you’re choosing a legacy of trust, quality, and commitment.

Why Choose EDCO?

So, why should you choose EDCO for your firefighter awards?

We have a responsive in-house team, which means that to us, you’re not just another customer. Our team ensures that every query, request, and detail is attended to with utmost care and precision.

Additionally, we provide premium-quality products and craft our awards from the finest materials. Our products have been highly rated by customers and come with a “lowest-price promise,” so you can rest assured that you get the very best at the most competitive prices.

We also offer free engraving and shipping, so you don’t have to worry about hidden costs or last-minute surprises. Finally, because we’ve been in the business for over 50 years, we understand that most recognitions are time-sensitive. That’s why we offer guaranteed on-time delivery so that every award reaches its destination right on time.

Celebrate your heroes with the best, because they deserve nothing less. Contact EDCO today to start your custom firefighter awards order.