People often forget that whatever the emergency the fire service is usually first on the scene: from house fires to vehicle accidents and chemical spills to water rescue missions, firefighters risk their lives to save others every day.
In the case of Lieutenant Brad Clark, of Virginia’s Hanover County Fire-EMS, he and his colleagues were helping a motorist during Tropical Storm Michael at the beginning of last month when tragedy struck. He and his three squad members were hit by another vehicle while helping the motorist. Sadly, Lt. Clark died at the scene.
Thousands of people attended the fallen firefighter’s funeral and his brother read a letter out at his memorial service that Lt. Clark wrote in the event that he was killed in the line of duty. His words are so insightful and so very moving, we all need to hear them and honor the sacrifice that this incredible person made.
Three of Brad’s colleagues managed to escape without life-threatening injuries. Unfortunately, Brad did not have the same luck. But it seemed almost like Brad had predicted that his life could end suddenly.
Being the family man he was, he did not want any questions left unanswered so left a secret letter.
There wasn’t a dry eye at the memorial when Brad’s brother Jonathan Clark read a letter nobody knew about.
“To my brothers in the fire department, what can I say? We are all Peter Pan and we’ll never grow up. Not even today. … The brotherhood means so much to me and I love every one of you. Thank you all for sharing this amazing job with me, and I ask all of you to watch over my family in the coming days, weeks, and months.”
Brad then thanked his family for “making me into the man I am — or was — up until a few days ago. Now, I’m a free spirit, flying high and striving to watch over each of you.”
Some well-chosen words to his daughters
“The little women that had me wrapped around their little fingers. You will never understand how much you mean to me. You all have taught me so much in life, probably more than I ever taught you all. I never knew love until I had little versions of myself walking around. My heart existing outside of my chest.”
Of course, he had a few words to say to his beloved wife
“To my buttercup: I’ve loved you since I was 19 years old. … I will miss being able to tell you multiple times, each and every day, that I love you. … You’re the missing piece that completed my life.”
I hope that Brad and his wife will forever have a spiritual bond to each other.
It’s really tragic what happened, but I’m glad he thought to write a letter with such powerful words for his family.
Brad died while helping others and his letter shows how aware of the risks he was taking every day. Rest in peace brave hero.
Share the article with your friends on Facebook to pay tribute to all firefighters who risk their lives every day to save us!