Submitted by his Mother
Brandon Whimple‚ a 19 year old full of life and energy‚ died on Saturday March 24‚ 2007 when the Tanker truck he was a passenger in lost control and flipped killing both he and the driver‚ as they were responding to the second of two structure fires that day.
Brandon was born in Jacksonville North Carolina on November 30‚ 1987 to Richard K. Whimple and Lisa M. Whimple. An auto mechanic and a volunteer fireman‚ Brandon spent most of his time working on cars‚ spending time with his family and volunteering as much time as he could at the fire station.
Curiosity for the fire service came partly because he constantly saw his dad and brother rush out of the house and respond to the station for call after call. His curiosity got the best of him‚ and he eventually joined Rhodestown Volunteer Fire Department on April 18‚ 2005‚ then Brandon had the ability to experience what it meant to be a fireman.
March 24th‚ of 2007 was a day of accomplishment for Brandon. That morning proved rewarding for Brandon as he got to enter his first structure fire as a firefighter. Other firefighters on scene that day rated his performance as ‘admirable’ and some say he looked as if he was on ‘cloud 9’ and that his movements looked almost ‘angelic’ while taking off his pack after coming out of the structure. That same morning he was requested to drive for the first time during training. This was a goal he had wanted to reach for sometime. Brent‚ his brother‚ described Brandon’s reaction as ‘beaming and bragging that he was able to do it first‚ and he couldn’t wait to tell Dad what he had done’.
As we remember Brandon stumbling out the door‚ falling down the stairs finally rolling out into the yard to go to a call all battered and bruised‚ we are reminded of the dedication‚ passion and love that Brandon had for the fire service.
As his family‚ some of our fondest memories will be those of watching him play soccer‚ taking his brothers mudding in his truck‚ and riding his brothers on the go-cart while they were desperately hanging on‚ but as parents of Brandon‚ our fondest memories will be the first day of school‚ the first step‚ and many other firsts until finally growing into a young man seeking his own path in life. The one thing that will be remembered the most by family and friends will be Brandon’s amazing smile.