‘He never gave up’: Pike County firefighter dies in crash, remembered for decades of service

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Published: Jun. 8, 2023 at 7:10 PM EDT
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MARROWBONE, Ky. (WYMT) - The Marrowbone Volunteer Fire Department is mourning the loss of its assistant fire chief, celebrating his decades of dedication to the community.

Brian Belcher died in a crash Wednesday, leaving his family and fellow firefighters to remember the man he was and his love for service.

“You have two types of volunteers. You have the ones that run in and volunteer for a while and leave; you got the ones that run in, volunteer, put up with the heartaches and all the stress and stay,” said fire chief Clinard “Bubby” Adkins. “Brian was one of those. He never gave up.”

Those who love him say he was always there for anyone in need and constantly found ways to be of service during his nearly 30 years in the department, regardless of the circumstances.

“He opened the door and, the ladders stick out on the truck, he had caught one of the ladders and hit,” Adkins recalled when asked about a story that stuck with him over the years. “I think it sling-shotted him backwards. Here he was, with his eye cut down, and climbed up in the truck, shut the door, and said, ‘Let’s go.’”

From the funny memories of his battle with the fire ladder to the times he managed to show up without being asked, they say he was one of a kind.

“You just can’t replace him,” said Adkins. “I’m gonna miss him.”

Now, the fire station is being transformed into a funeral space as the community prepares to say goodbye and the trucker is expected to have a procession that will include his fellow drivers as well as the first responders he served with every day.

You can see his arrangements here.