FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 12, 2022


Memorial ceremonies this weekend will honor Missouri’s fallen firefighters

Governor Parson has proclaimed Sunday, May 15, as Missouri Fire Service Memorial Day

Missouri’s fire service will hold two memorial services this weekend at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri in Kingdom City to honor the state’s fallen firefighters

On Saturday, May 14, at 9 p.m., a candlelight vigil will be held for all Missouri firefighters who have died while serving their communities.

On Sunday, May 15, at 10:30 a.m., a memorial service will be held in which the names of seven Missouri firefighters who died in the line of duty will be added to the monument wall commemorating Missouri firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice while bravely serving their fellow Missourians.

Four of the firefighters died in 2021. In addition, three firefighters, whose line of duty deaths from past years have recently been confirmed, will also be recognized. Other Missouri firefighters who passed away will also be remembered during the ceremonies. 

Governor Mike Parson has proclaimed May 15 as Fire Service Memorial Day in Missouri.

“Missouri’s firefighters can be relied upon to answer the alarm bell whenever it sounds and protect the lives and property of their fellow Missourians,” Governor Parson said. “We will always honor and remember the courageous individuals who paid the ultimate price for their dedication to public service and their communities.”

“Each year, I am inspired and grateful as Missouri’s fire service comes together to honor our fellow firefighters who made the highest sacrifice to protect others from harm,” State Fire Marshal Tim Bean said. “I am grateful for their service, the lives they led and the legacy they’ve left behind. I’m inspired by the strength I witness in the survivors they left behind and their fellow firefighters, who continue to carry out the fallen firefighters’ legacy of brave and selfless service.”

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, the events will be moved to Auxvasse Elementary School, 650 E. Harrison St., Auxvasse, MO 65231.

The Missouri Fire Fighters Memorial Foundation Board has approved these additions to the Wall of Honor:

Firefighter Rodney Heard, St. Louis Fire Department, June 15, 2021 
Firefighter Heard, a 25-year veteran of the St. Louis Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.  

Battalion Chief Marvin Shaffrey, Cedar Hill Fire Department, Nov. 2, 2021
Battalion Chief Shaffrey, a 42-year veteran of the Cedar Hill Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.

Captain Ivan LaGrand, Cape Girardeau Fire Department, Dec. 1, 2021
Captain LaGrand, a 25-year-veteran of the Cape Girardeau Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.  

Assistant Chief Bryant Gladney, Boone County Fire Protection District, Dec. 22, 2021  
Assistant Chief Gladney, a 25-year veteran of the Boone County Fire Protection District, died from injuries sustained when a tractor trailer struck his vehicle while he was staged at the scene of a prior motor vehicle accident.

Rescue Specialist Ralph Aaron Goddard, Springfield Fire Department, June 21, 2015
Rescue Specialist Goddard, a 12-year veteran of the Springfield Fire Department, died as a result of occupational cancer.

Firefighter George W. Shoemaker, Brookfield Fire Department, Jan. 10, 1942  
Firefighter Shoemaker, a four-year veteran of the Brookfield Fire Department, died from injuries sustained when he fell from a ladder while fighting a commercial structure fire.

Foreman Cornelius C. Crowley, St. Joseph Fire Department, Jan. 8, 1908   
Foreman Crowley, a 15-year veteran of the St. Joseph Fire Department, died from lung congestion after being overcome by smoke while fighting a commercial structure fire.

Saturday, May 14

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

WHO:              State First Marshal Tim Bean

                         Leaders of the Fire Fighters Association of Missouri

                         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 14

Sunday, May 15

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

WHO:              Department of Public Safety Director Sandy Karsten

                         State Fire Marshal Tim Bean

                         Leaders of the Fire Fighters Association of Missouri

                         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:          10:30 a.m. Sunday, May 15

 



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For more information, call 573-751-5432 or e-mail mike.o'connell@dps.mo.gov