Passing of Deputy Chief Craig Ralston
By EMS Lieutenant Margery Sayers
February 5, 2022

The Ellicott City Volunteer Fire Department (ECVFD) regrets to announce the Line of Duty Death of Deputy Chief Craig Ralston. Chief Ralston was also a Master Firefighter with the Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority (MWAA). While in performance of his duties with MWAA Chief Ralston contracted COVID. Unfortunately, he passed away due to related complications on February 3, 2022.

Chief Ralston joined ECVFD in March 2002. During his tenure with the department, he rose through the ranks of the Department. He served as Fire Lieutenant (2004-2006), Fire Captain (2006-2009), Assistant Chief (2009-2010) and Deputy Chief (2010-2019). Chief Ralston has been posthumously promoted to Deputy Chief effective February 3, 2022. Chief Ralston been awarded and recognized for his service many times during his tenure in Ellicott City. He received the following awards: Firefighter of the Year 2002-2003, Top Firefighter Responder 2003-2004; Gift of Life 2004. He received a citation for his involvement in the 2004 Tanker Truck Fire on I-95. He received commendations for his efforts with Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and the 2006 Lebanon Repatriation.

For those who knew and loved Chief Ralston, he loved the Ellicott City Fire Department. He loved to tinker with the apparatus and the buildings. One of his true loves was Annabelle, our Antique Fire Engine. He was responsible for keeping the 1929 American LaFrance engine running and training other members on how to operate her. Chief Ralston was a great mentor to all members - he would take time out of his day to help any member who needed anything in the department.

Chief Ralston also loved being the departments Santa. Each year during the Holiday Season, Chief Ralston and his wife EMS Sergeant Kat Ralston, would dress up as Santa and Mrs. Claus. Every year, with the elves of the department, they would load the up Santa's fire sled and drive through Ellicott City spreading the Christmas Spirit to everyone who saw them.

Chief Ralston will be greatly missed by the Ellicott City Volunteer Fire Department and all of the lives he touched.