Yesterday the Youngsville Fire Department and the family of 51 year-old Volunteer Assistant Chief Jeff Fields honored their friend and loved one who recently passed away, so unexpectedly. Everyone who knew Jeff appeared to be deeply grieving at his loss.
For the Youngsville Fire Department the passing of Jeff marked the loss of the first active duty firefighter they can remember in the history of the department.
Yesterday afternoon the Youngsville Fire Department carried the remains of Jeff Fields to the Youngsville Baptist Church for his funeral. Fields was honored along the route by a number of both near and far fire departments which showed up to join in the procession to the church and express their sympathy to the family and their brother firefighters over the loss of Assistant Chief Jeff Fields.
First we would like to give our heartfelt appreciation to the family and the Youngsville Fire Department who allowed us to have such open access to document the sad event so we could share it with you.
Even as observers and journalists, we have to admit to shedding some tears during the editing of the videos below. You can read that as “cried like a baby sitting alone in a dark room in front of a computer screen.” From what we heard about Jeff he would have had a good natured chuckle over making us do that.
The first video is the procession of Jeff’s Truck 41 which carried his remains to the church from the Youngsville Fire Department Station 1. To appreciate the full impact of the video we suggest you view the entire video in full screen mode and in HD. To do that click on the gear icon and change the quality to 1080 HD and click the [ ] icon in the lower right of the player to select full screen.
The video begins at Station 1 and the Truck 41 proceeds through downtown Youngsville as people stand along the route and police officers and firefighters salute as he passes. Prior to entering Youngsville Truck 41 passes by the house of Fields and blows its horn in salute.
If you do one thing while reading this article, please watch the moving video below of the final journey of Assistant Chief Fields to honor him.
The second video is at the bottom of this article.
Ladder trucks from Wake Forest and Louisburg, hoisted a giant American flag near the railroad track crossing in Youngsville and the procession passed underneath.
Prior to the remains of Assistant Chief Jeff Fields being carried through town on his Truck 41 a long procession of trucks of other visiting departments passed through and parked along the route.
These departments included Wake Forest Fire Department, Louisburg Fire Department, Franklinton Fire Department, City of Durham Fire Department, Cokesbury Volunteer Fire Department, Townsville Volunteer Fire Department, Vance County Fire Department, Bunn Rural Fire Department, Pilot Fire Department, Franklinton Rescue & EMS, Gold Sand Rural Fire Department, Justice Volunteer Fire Department, and Cary Fire Department. Police from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Franklinton Police, and Youngsville Police were represented as well. Stony Hill Fire Department assisted by providing coverage for the Youngsville Department and Mitchiner’s Crossroads Fire Department and Vance Rescue provided coverage for the Franklinton Fire Department..
An honor guard led the black draped Youngsville Truck 41 through Town to the Church.
Following Truck 41 marched the men of the Youngsville Fire Department.
The men marched in cadence and were guided by Raleigh Firefighter Glenn Todd. The family followed the men in vehicles.
After the procession passed the large flag was carefully recovered.
People entered the church to attend the funeral as Truck 41 sat empty having carried Assistant Chief Fields for the very last time.
The following video is the combination of the return of the ashes of Jeff Fields to the Youngsville Fire Department and the funeral procession through Youngsville by other members of the procession.