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Procession honoring fallen Iowa volunteer fire captain


Dozens of fire trucks and ambulances rolled through New Sharon Thursday in honor of Gary DeCook, a volunteer firefighter from the City of Barnes who died unexpectedly on Aug. 27. After the funeral, ambulances arrived. Fire led the procession to the cemetery. “You’re not just a firefighter. You’re a brother,” said Michael Cox, who is also with the Barnes City Volunteer Fire Department. “It’s brotherly love.” DeCook’s firefighters found a special way to honor him by driving the fire truck he helped convert from an Army vehicle. “To get it working today was a really big thing for us because it took a bit of work,” Cox said. “But we spent the night some stuff here and got it.” Those who know DeCook describe him as someone with a passion for helping people. And the community responded to its thanks by showing up in large numbers. “Every fire department in a few counties has a representative here,” said Russell Van Renterghem, Mahaska County Sheriff. “And it’s just an honor for Gary. Just to show how respected and loved he is.”

Dozens of fire trucks and ambulances rolled through New Sharon on Thursday to honor Gary DeCook, a volunteer firefighter from the City of Barnes who died unexpectedly August 27.

Following the funeral, fire trucks led the procession into the cemetery.

“You’re not just a firefighter. You’re a brother,” said Michael Cox, who is also with the Barnes City Volunteer Fire Department. “It’s brotherly love.”

DeCook’s fellow firefighters found a special way to honor him by driving the fire truck he helped convert from an Army vehicle.

“To get it working today was a really big thing for us because it took a bit of work,” Cox said. “But we spent the night some stuff here and got it.”

People who know DeCook well describe him as someone with a passion for helping people. And the community responded to its thanks by showing up in large numbers.

“Every fire department in a few counties has a representative here,” said Russell Van Renterghem, Mahaska County Sheriff. “And it’s just an honor for Gary. Just to show how respected and loved he is.”



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