Fallen Firefighers

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Roy E. Parker
February 27, 1947 - February 7, 2017

Roy E. Parker, age 69 of Calhoun, Georgia, died at his home on Tuesay, February 7, 2017 following several months of declining health. Roy was born in Calhoun on February 27, 1947; he was the son of the late Duell Parker and the late Virginia Nell Smith. Roy proudly served his country in the United States Air Force. After his service, he was a firefighter with Civil Service for more than twenty-six years. Roy was a member of the Cup of Life Worship Center. Roy was an avid fisherman, golfer, and sports fan; he loved the outdoors. Roy was a1965 graduate of Calhoun High School where he was a member of the Yellow Jackets Football Team. Roy is survived by his wife, Susan Bailey Parker; his children and their spouses, Jake and Tracy Parker, Wendy and Chad Myers, Cliff Meadows, and Tracy and Ronnie Lester; his brothers and sisters and their spouses, Ricky and Teresa Parker, Judi and Jerry Collins, Alan and Paula Parker, Katrina and Kevin Santori, Gary Mealor, and Ann and Lester Duvall; his grandchildren, Austin Parker, Morgan Fields, Thomas Lester, Bailey Lester, Mattie Lester, Michael Meadows, Mack Meadows, and Mason Meadows; nieces, nephews, and other relatives. The funeral service will be conducted on Saturday, February 11, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. from the chapel of Max Brannon and Sons Funeral Home. Burial, with United States Air Force Honors, will follow at Union Grove Baptist Church Cemetery. Rev. Kenneth Parker will officiate, with Ricky Parker and Horace Lawrence as eulogists. Rev. Ricky Reece will officiate at the graveside service. Pallbearers are Jerry Collins, Alan Parker, Gary Mealor, Cody Parks, Ronnie Lester, Thomas Lester, and Bailey Lester. Calhoun High School graduating class of 1965 senior football players will serve as honorary pallbearers.

John David Friis
Civilian-Captain, USN-Navy Regional Mid Atlantic (Retired)October 6, 2015

John David Friis, 54, passed away peacefully October 6, 2015 at his home with his family at his side. John was born in Bethesda, MD and was a retired Navy Aviation Electrician (AE1) and was a retired Captain with the Navy Regional Mid Atlantic Fire Department. He was a former resident of Virginia Beach where he had been a Virginia Beach volunteer fireman and was an honorary Captain in the Franklin Fire and Rescue. John was a member of the International Association of Firefighters. Survivors include his wife of 32 years, Gena Fay Friis, his parents, James and Carol Friis of Richmond, two sons, James Daniel Friis (Heather) of Franklin and Michael Allen Friis of Ogden, UT, two brothers, Carl Friis of CO.and Mark Friis of NC, two grandchildren, Hunter Nathaniel Friis and Elizabeth Charlotte Friis. A funeral will be conducted at 2 PM Friday, October 9, 2015 at Wright Funeral Home, 206 West 4th Ave, Franklin, VA with Pastor Randy Wright officiating. There will be a visitation one hour prior to the service at the funeral home. Burial with full Naval Honors will be 1 PM Monday, October 12, 2015 in the Lawrenceville, Ohio Cemetery. The family suggests memorial donations be made to the Franklin Fire and Rescue, P.O. Box 179, Franklin, VA 23851. www.wrightfuneralhome.org .

Chief James (Jay) Garrett
USAF (Retired)March 27, 1930 - August 9, 2015

Chief James (Jay) Garrett, age 85 of San Antonio, Texas, died August 9, 2015. James was born in Sayre, Oklahoma and lived much of his life in San Antonio where he met the love of his life Delores. They were married and shared 58 wonderful years together. James left home and joined the Navy at 16 to serve his country in WWII. After 8 years he transitioned to the then new Air Force for the next 21 years. While in the service he earned his degree in Fire Science and rose through the ranks from fireman to Fire Chief. During the Vietnam War he was stationed several times at Air Force bases in Thailand. His mission was saving pilots from their burning, and often bomb laden, returning damaged aircraft. On his last deployment, he and his men also responded to an out of control fire in the local town of Nakhom Phanom. His actions were credited by the Mayor with saving the town and all its residents. After retiring from the military, James served as the Fire Chief at several Military Bases around the country including Grissom AFB in Indiana, Davis-Monthan AFB in Arizona, Bergstrom AFB in Austin, and for many years, until he retired at Lackland AFB in San Antonio. In all; James gave 51 years of his life to serving his country while saving lives, and property. James was preceded in death by his wife, Delores; his father and mother, John and Viola. He is survived by his Son, James Garrett of Austin, and innumerable friends. SERVICE MONDAY AUGUST 17, 2015 9:00 AM PORTER LORING CHAPEL 1101 McCULLOUGH AVE. Interment will follow at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery. The family asks that instead of flowers, contributions may be made to causes dear to him: the American Lung Association www.lung.org or the Alzheimer's Association www.alz.org or any charity of your choice .

Elbert T.Z. Sherrill
CMSgt, USAF (Retired)January 13, 1931 - May 2, 2015

T.Z., or Al as some called him, died on May 2, 2015, after a battle with lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. In accordance with his instructions, he is being cremated and there will be no services or newspaper obituary. Chief Sherrill was well known throughout the fire protection community. He entered the Air Force in October 1950 and served continuously until April 1978. He became an Assistant Chief in 3 years and a Fire Chief in 11 years. He served 4-1/2 years at the USAF Fire School at Chanute AFB IL. In 4 years, as a member of the USAF Fire Protection Assistance and Evaluation Team (ACRFAET), he helped evaluate 68 Air Force bases worldwide. He served as the USAF Advisor for the ANG for 3 years. After his retirement in 1978, he worked 11 months on 0ff-shore oil rigs. In 1979, he became the Fire Chief at Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota, and retired in 1995 as a GS-12. He had a total of 44 years with USAF Fire Protection. Chief Sherrill is survived by his wife, Marge, two daughters, and two grandchildren.

Firefighter and Artist Casey Siewierski, Jr.
December 17, 1942 - December 8, 2014

Casey was born in Chicago, Illinois and moved to Florida in 1996. As long as he could remember he wanted to be a firefighter and an artist and was fortunate enough to fulfill both dreams. Casey was a firefighter for forty-two years; starting with the United States Air Force in 1960, Chicago International Airport through the 80�s and finishing with the Federal Government at Homestead ARB, Florida in 2003. Upon retiring, Casey was able to fully devote himself to his art and has taken several awards in over fifty years at his craft. He joined the Cape Coral Art League and was a member on the league board of directors. When he was not painting he was keenly interested in politics and law. Surviving him are his wife of forty-nine years, a daughter, a son and three grand-children.

Firefighter Don Kerry Evans
October 13, 1933 - October 15, 2014

Don Kerry Evans also known as "DK" of Dover passed away at the age of 81 on Wednesday October 15, 2014 at his home with his family. He served in the United States Air Force Fire Department retiring after 21 years, then went on to work as a Civil Service firefighter at Dover AFB for 20 years. Mr. Evans was a life member of the Robbins Hose Fire Company in Dover, and the American Legion Walter L. Fox Post #2. He also was a member of the American Legion Riders motorcycle club, the Masonic Union Lodge #7 A.F. & A.M., Dover, where he was a 32nd DEGREE MASTER Mason and a member of the Scottish Rite. Mr. Evans enjoyed riding his Harley Davidson Road King, spending time with his family. Additionally he enjoyed giving back to the community through volunteering and serving others. He especially enjoyed his morning cup of tea made by his wife and going out for a traditional English fish and chips dinner. He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Jean Mary Prescott Evans of Dover, sons, Paul Kerry Evans and his wife Carol of Wyoming, Gary James Evans of Dover, daughters, Cindy Ann Cogar of Smyrna and Wendy Jane Crawford and her husband Donald of Troy, Illinois. He is also survived by 8 grandchildren Shannon Evans, Andrew and Shawn Crawford, Cody and Justin Cogar, Courtney and Kyle Bapties, Emilee Teal and one great-grandchild Jace Torres. Following A Masonic service, Interment will be at Delaware Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Millsboro, DE.

Chief Jerry Jewell
September 1, 1930 - September 25, 2014

Gerald "Jerry" Jewell, 84, passed away on September 25, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. He was born on September 1, 1930 in Belleville, New Jersey. On August 15, 1953 Gerald exchanged wedding vows with Grace Imogene Reid at St Peter's Catholic Church in Belleville, New Jersey. He stood by her side for 56 years until she passed away in February of 2009. They were blessed with four children, Beth (deceased), Kathi, Tom and Mike. Another blessing for Gerald and Grace was the gift of ten grandchildren, Jerry enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on his 18th birthday serving until 1952, seeing action in the Korean Conflict where he landed in the Inchon invasion and received the Purple Heart for wounds received during the battle of the Chosin Reservoir. After serving his commitment, he returned home to New Jersey to marry Grace and start his family. After endeavors in driving a city bus and auxiliary police officer, he found his calling as a fire fighter in the Belleville and Newark area. Firefighting brought him back to federal service with the Navy and Army in New Jersey and finally with the Air Force in 1974 when the family moved to Altus, Oklahoma. His career with the Air Force would take him to Germany, Hawaii and Guam with the final stop being back in Altus Air Force Base where he took over as the Base Fire Chief in 1985, serving there until his retirement after 33 years of service in 1989.

Jeffery Davis
CMSgt, USAF (Retired)July 29, 1950 - September 22, 2014

Jeffery (Dave) Davis was completely healed on September 22, 2014, when he passed into his eternal life after a long illness. Jeff hailed from Detroit MI but finally settled in Yorktown VA after having served around the world during his career as a US Air Force firefighter. He was a consummate professional in every respect and served in the field as well as major command and Air Staff positions. After his military career, he returned to his calling as a Fire Protection Specialist at Air Force Reserve Command. He served there until his medical retirement. Jeff will be laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery as soon as arrangements are finalized. More information will be posted here as it becomes available. Those wishing to send condolences to the family, please email me at dww @ dodfire.com (without the extra spaces) and I'll send you the mailing address. Rest in Peace my friend!

James T. Archer
TSgt, USAF (Retired)September 21, 1937 - May 7, 2014

Chief Fire Inspector, James T. Archer 55th Civil Engineer Squadron, Offutt AFB Nebraska departed this earth on 7 May 2014. Mr. Archer (Arch) was born on 21 September 1937 in Winton, North Carolina. He came from a large family of eight children, 4-brothers and 3 sisters. James graduated from C.S. Brown High School in 1957. He was active in baseball, basketball and was in the band. He joined the Air Force to beat the Army draft. On 18 August 1957 he went to basic training at Lackland, AFB TX. After Basic, he was assigned direct duty to fire protection at Malstrom AFB Montana. After 6-months and upgrade to 3-level, he was assigned to Etain AFB France for 3-years. In July 1961 he was assigned to Offutt AFB NE, 3902 AB Wing (SAC), where he met his wife Sylvia. He and Sylvia were married on 4 Aug 1963. They later had two children, a daughter, Karla and son James Jr. In 1965 He was assigned to Bangkok, Thailand for one-year. From there he went to Hancock Field, Syracuse, NY. His next move took him to Bitberg AB Germany for 4-years. After Bitberg he moved on to Kirtland AFB NM in 1973. After two years at Kirtland he was assigned to Clark AB in the Philippines. Next he was sent remote to Galena, Alaska for one year. From Alaska he was assigned to Blytheville AFB Arkansas in 1977. He retired from the Air Force in August of 1980 and came to Omaha to live. He then started his civil service job at Offutt AFB Fire Department in Fire Prevention as a GS-5 Fire Inspector. He retired from Offutt Civil service in 2006 as Chief Fire Inspector. All told, Arch gave the USAF over 48 years of his life. Survived by his wife of 51 years Sylvia Archer; children, Karla (Garen) Wright, James Jr. (Kandi) Archer; siblings, Roger (Paige) Archer -VA; Horace (Paula) Archer - VT; Larry (Barbara) Archer - NC; Fay (Earl) Heath - NC; Maggie (Donald) Anthony - NC; Barbara (James) Manley - NC; brothers-in-law, James, Lee, and Joe Rogers; sisters-in-law, Ella Jean (Johnny) Rogers, Betty (Ed) Mayhue, Joyce (Lenwood Jr.) Archer, Clara (Ollie Sr.) Rogers; many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

Leroy W. Osborn
CMSgt, USAF (Retired)October 16, 1929 - February 3, 2014

Leroy Wenton Osborn was born on October 16, 1929 to Ella Ennenga Osborn and Harry Dewitt Osborn in Willmar, Minnesota. Leroy joined Brothers Walter and Harry, and Sister Katherine at home, and was followed by Jerry, Elaine, Harris Dean, Bobby, and Gary (Skipper). As a young man, Leroy enlisted in the United States Air Force as an Aircraft Crash Rescueman. His duties were to "perform rescues from crashed or burning aircraft by liberating, removing, and applying emergency first aid to entrapped personnel.� He took that description of his service to heart, performing his duties admirably, saving many lives and earning numerous accolades for his bravery and heroism, including the Airman's Medal for valor. While stationed in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War, he won the Bronze Star, with oak leaf cluster, the Vietnam Campaign Medal with battle star, and the Vietnam Service Medal. After 30 years of service, he left the Air Force in 1978, but stayed at Offutt Air Force Base as Fire Chief, retiring in the 1990s. On September 4, 1954, Leroy married Gwendolyn Ruth Simanek, whom he loved deeply and cherished throughout his life. Together they had three children: Jeffery, Rebecca, and Jacqueline. As a military family, the five of them were stationed all over the world including, Puerto Rico, Spain and Germany. Leroy was particularly adept as a grandfather, and doted on his five grandchildren; Heather, Mindy, Molly, Roy and Keith. After retirement, Leroy spent time working on projects at his house in Red Oak, Iowa. When he was not teaching his grandchildren a new skill or cooking dinner for the family, he enjoyed hunting, traveling with Gwen in their motor home, the outdoors, and playing cards with his grandkids. Since childhood, he enjoyed relaxing times in the fishing boat with rod and reel. It was with great joy he brought home the occasional 'nice fish�. Leroy was adored by his family and admired by his colleagues. His life touched many, from those he saved to those with whom he worked, selflessly sharing so much. His passing leaves a void in the lives of many people. He loved us well.

David Contat
CMSgt, USAF (Retired)July 22 1957 - December 8, 2013

David Charles Contat, 56, of Columbus, Georgia, went to be with Jesus on December 8th, 2013. David was born in Mishawaka on July 22, 1957, to Charles G. and Mildred (Matz) Contat. He graduated from Penn High School where he played on the football team. After graduating from Penn he joined the United States Air Force where he served as a firefighter on the fire department for 24 years. During his years in the Air Force he was stationed all over the world. David enjoyed the outdoors and loved fishing.

Chief Raymond Dean West
CMSgt, USAF (Retired)December 2, 1953 - October 25, 2013

Raymond Dean West CHARLESTON - Raymond Dean West, 59, of Charleston, husband of Yong Cha (Lee) West, went home to be with the Lord on Friday, October 25, 2013. Raymond was a devoted husband, loving father and faithful friend. Raymond was born on December 2, 1953 in Sumter, SC son of the late Homer Dean West and Clemmie Elizabeth (Scurry) West. He served in the United States Air Force for 9 years. He retired after 37 years of employment from Charleston Air Force Base Fire Department as an Assistant Chief. He also worked for two years with Charleston Aviation Authority as an Operations Supervisor. Surviving in addition to his wife of 38 years, Yong Cha are: One Daughter: Jessica Lee West and her boyfriend Roger Valenzuela of Charleston; One Sister: Betty West Smith of Hamlet, NC; Nephew: John Smith of Hamlet, NC; Close Friends: Roger and Nancy Schwartz of Charleston.