Submitted by his Mother
Brandon Kenyon Thompson was born in Mobile, Alabama on May 2, 1980, to Diane and Frank Thompson. He was the youngest of three boys. His family moved to Summerville, South Carolina when Brandon was three. The brothers; whose ages span a three year range always had a close bond and shared similar interest. It was only natural when Frank and Jeffery began volunteering at the Pine Ridge Volunteer Fire Department, fourteen year old Brandon would also.
Brandon was named Junior Firefighter of the Year and during the thirteen years as a volunteer at Pine Ridge was honored as Rookie of the Year, Firefighter of the Year and Officer of the Year at the 40 member department. Brandon sought training opportunities and participated in a variety of classes. He worked to enhance the volunteer department’s budget by researching and writing grants for safety equipment. Brandon held several positions including Assistant Chief and station captain.
He grew into a wonderful man who gave of himself to his neighbors and his family. He was at over 6′ a gentle, thoughtful, fun-loving friend to everyone. He was a peacemaker who saw life as a cup half full‚ limited only by his choices. He graduated from Stratford High School and in January 1999 joined the Summerville Fire Department. Then in 2003 he joined the City of Charleston Fire Department. He was assigned to Engine 10 as a firefighter, despite encouragement to take the engineers’ test, Brandon remained a firefighter because he wanted to be on the nozzle and fight the fire.
His brothers moved on to other areas of public service but Brandon’s passion remained firefighting. He was active in the area schools with fire safety training. He loved Higbee, his Weimaraner puppy.
On June 18, 2007 Brandon and eight other City of Charleston firemen responded to the Sofa Super Store fire. Brandon was not scheduled to work that day but had taken a shift swap. Brandon was detailed to Ladder Co. 5 in which the entire crew perished during the blaze.
Brandon’s brothers Frank and Jeffery were honored to join City of Charleston firemen to carry Brandon from the chard rubble of the fire. Brandon’s body was the last firefighter to be removed from the buildings ruins. Brandon was the youngest of the Charleston 9. He will always be with us in the memories and stories that we share.
Submitted by his Fiancée
Brandon had been with the City of Charleston Fire Department for four and a half years and was stationed at number 10 – The Five and Dime. He was assigned to Engine 10 but detailed to Ladder 5 on the day of the fire.
Brandon also volunteered at Pine Ridge Rural Fire Department and was a Captain there. He started at Pine Ridge as a Junior Firefighter and had been there for over 10 years.
He leaves behind his fiancée, Rachel Sheridan; his mother, Diane White; father and stepmother, Frank and Stephanie Thompson; two brothers and sister in laws and two nephews.
Brandon was engaged to be married to Rachel Sheridan on October 7th – only four months away.
Submitted by his Brother
Brandon Thompson was a firefighter assigned to Engine Company 10 located west of the Ashley in Charleston, SC. On the night of June 18, 2007, he was detailed to Ladder Co. 5. Brandon was killed during interior operations at the Sofa Super Store fire in which 8 other Charleston firefighters lost their lives. Brandon was 27 years old.
He had joined Pine Ridge Volunteer Fire Department in Summerville at age 14‚ following in his two older brothers, footsteps. He attained the rank of Captain at Pine Ridge and enjoyed researching new equipment for the fire department. Brandon devoted his time and energy to mentoring new firefighters and instilled the pride of the fire service to anyone he met. Brandon had been awarded the Rookie of the Year, Firefighter of the Year and Officer of the Year awards from Pine Ridge Volunteer Fire Department.
Brandon is survived by his mother; father and stepmother; two brothers and their wives. He also leaves behind two nephews and his maternal grandparents.