Well-known Floyd County firefighter, veteran dies after health complications

FLOYD COUNTY, Ky. (WYMT) - A Floyd County man who dedicated his life to helping many in Eastern Kentucky died Saturday.

Donald D. Parker was a Vietnam veteran and served with several fire departments.

"So his whole life has been serving other people," said his son Will Parker.

Parker told WYMT his father had his hands in a little bit of everything.

"He served one tour in Vietnam. He sold insurance. He was a dispatcher for the City of Martin Police Department for several years," explained Parker.

Proving no task was too big or too small, he also spent around 30 years volunteering for multiple fire departments.

"He was still active with Wheelwright Fire Department up until Saturday at his death," Parker pointed out.

He also served countless years of ministry.

Saturday, Don took his last breath at 76-years-old.

"They were there to get him up out of bed and when they stood him up, he just collapsed," said a tearful Parker.

His father was staying in the Eastern Kentucky Veterans Center in Hazard.

"The coroner told me that it was natural causes. He had a lot of health problems against him," he explained. "They said that they had coded him 10 times," Parker added.

This was a true testament to his strength to push forward.

"He always had that military mentality," said Parker.

Along with serving the community, Don loved to do fun things, like fishing.

"I've lost more than a dad. I lost my best friend," Parker said.

He told WYMT his father left this world a better place.

"It's just been overwhelming at the amount of support that my family has received," said Parker.

His visitation began Monday night at 6:00 at the Little Rosa Old Regular Baptist Church in McDowell. Tuesday will be another day of visitation beginning at 10:00 a.m.

Donald D. Parker's funeral will be Wednesday at 1:00 p.m.

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