FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 15, 2015


Memorial services will honor two Missouri firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2014 and five others killed in past years

Ceremonies will also honor other Missouri firefighters who passed away last year

Missouri firefighters who died in the line of duty will be honored during services Saturday and Sunday at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri in Kingdom City.

On Saturday, May 16, at 9 p.m., a candlelight vigil will be held for all Missouri firefighters who have died while serving their communities.

On Sunday, May 17, at 10:30 a.m., the names of two Missouri firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2014 will be added to the monument wall commemorating Missouri firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice while protecting citizens of the state. Five other members of the fire service who died in past years will also be added to the wall. Other Missouri firefighters who passed away during 2014 will also be remembered during the ceremonies.

“The fallen firefighters we honor are a reminder that throughout the generations brave and selfless individuals have been willing to risk their own lives in order to keep others safe,” Gov. Jay Nixon said. “We owe a tremendous debt to all those who paid the ultimate price for their noble service as well as to the families they left behind.”

“Firefighters across Missouri sacrifice time at home with their own families in order to rush to burning houses, overturned vehicles and other emergency calls,” said Acting State Fire Marshal Greg Carrell. “We remember the heroes we lost for the commitment they made to improve their communities and the examples they set for others in the fire service.”

The firefighters whose names will be added to the Fire Fighters Line of Duty Memorial Wall are:

Lt. Bruce E. Britt, age 48, Columbia Fire Department, Feb. 22, 2014

Lt. Britt was working to evacuate students from a University of Missouri residence apartment building when a portion of the building’s elevated walkway collapsed. He was a 23-year veteran of the Columbia Fire Department.

Chief Eddie J. Johnson, Jr., age 45, Alton Fire Department, Oct. 20, 2014

Chief Johnson died in a single-vehicle crash while responding in a police vehicle to a house fire six miles west of Alton. He had served four years as chief of the volunteer Alton Fire Department.

Firefighter George Hill III, Camdenton Rural Fire Association (now Camdenton Fire Protection District), Oct. 26, 1973

Firefighter Hill died after a tanker truck he was riding in rolled over while responding to a vehicle fire, ejecting Hill and the driver.

Asst. Chief Clarence (Shorty) Stiles, age 54, St. Joseph Fire Department, June 29, 1968

Asst. Chief Stiles died after coming into contact with high voltage lines while climbing an aerial ladder at a fire scene. He was a 25-year veteran of the department.

First Asst. Chief William A. Huebner, age 59, St. Joseph Fire Department, Oct. 5, 1952

First Asst. Chief Huebner died of an apparent heart attack while fighting a structure fire. He was a 35-year veteran of the department.

Engineer Herman F. Metz, age 56, St. Joseph Fire Department, Feb. 22, 1918

Engineer Metz died after falling and being trampled by the horses pulling his fire vehicle en route to a fire.

Firefighter Blass Argus, age 35, St. Joseph Fire Department, Jan. 23, 1870

Firefighter Argus was one of three who died due to a structure fire. During secondary search operations a wall collapsed on Argus and four other firefighters. Argus died a short time after being severely injured.

Both events will take place at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, which is located one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection (I-70 Exit 148) in Kingdom City, Mo. In case of inclement weather, events will be moved to Auxvasse Elementary School, 650 E. Harrison St., Auxvasse, MO 65231.

Saturday, May 16

WHAT:           Candlelight Vigil honoring Missouri firefighters who died serving Missouri’s fire service

WHO:             Families and friends of those who died

Firefighters from across Missouri

WHERE:         Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection, Kingdom City

WHEN:           9 p.m. Saturday, May 16


Sunday, May 17

WHAT:           Memorial Service honoring Missouri firefighters who died serving Missouri’s fire service

WHO:             Acting State Fire Marshal Greg Carrell

                        Leaders of the Fire Fighters Association of Missouri

                        Families and friends of those who have died

                        Other firefighters from across Missouri

WHERE:         Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection, Kingdom City

WHEN:          10:30 a.m. Sunday, May 17



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For more information, call 573-751-5432 or e-mail [email protected]