Firefighting, Leadership

Remembering Fallen Firefighters Vital for Families

To the families of fallen firefighters, remembrance brings comfort, writes Lincoln Journal Star.

Melissa Wach knows this firsthand. Her husband, Jeremy, a dedicated Wymore volunteer firefighter, died after a burning house collapsed on him in 2007.

As she spoke to the crowd Saturday at the Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service, Wach urged the other firefighters’ families and friends in attendance to understand their loved ones’ deaths will not be forgotten.

The service, organized by the Nebraska State Volunteer Firefighters Association, honored the 75 volunteer, professional and auxiliary firefighters who died in 2011.

Though Melissa’s husband was the most recent to die in the line of duty, she said the families of all firefighters know the sacrifice of time that their loved ones made to be  volunteers.

“They miss holidays, birthdays and their children’s activities to help strangers on their darkest days,” she said. “And, especially in Nebraska, they do it for little or no pay.”

The ceremony began with a solemn color guard processional down Seventh Street to Wymore Church of Christ. Several speakers, including Lt. Governor Rick Sheehy, gave keynote addresses inside the sanctuary before members of Wymore Fire and Rescue presented a memorial wreath.

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