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National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Fire Chief
Age: 82
Year of Death: 2021

H.M. Bottom

Homer McKenzie “H.M.” Bottom was born September 23, 1939, the sixth of eight children to Homer and Edith Bottom of Russell Springs, Kentucky. After graduating from high school, he married his high school sweetheart, Sue. They had three daughters, Kathy, Kimberly, and Kelley; five grandchildren; five great-grandchildren, and two great-great grandchildren.

H.M. joined the local volunteer fire department at the age of 25 and served 57 years, 46 of those years as chief. In 2015, he was named Volunteer Fire Chief of the Year. He was a dedicated public servant. He served as ambulance and police dispatcher for 10 years, an EMT, solid waste supervisor, and Russell County emergency manager for 28 years. He was also a founder in organizing the first ambulance service for Russell County, Kentucky.

In addition, he was a founding member of the local rescue squad, a member of the Masons for 55 years, chairman of the 911 board, a successful businessman, and founder for a local organization called Charities for the Needy. He started this charity to help needy families in the community in times of need and during the holidays. This charity quickly grew with the help of other community members. His daughters will be continuing this work, along with his tradition of delivering gifts to those families on Christmas Eve.

H.M. was a pillar of the community. He remained on call 24/7 and was the first to respond to emergencies. He was a long-time member and deacon of Royville Friendship Church. A dedicated and loving family man, he took great pride in his family and was there for every event, offering his support and encouragement. In the little free time he had, he enjoyed bushhogging on his tractor and taking care of his beloved horse, Thunder. He was a collector of antiques and loved to study history.

H.M. loved to make people laugh and always had a story to relate to everything. You could always go to him for life advice because he had a lifetime of experience. He was there to offer a helping hand, with a warm smile and a heart full of compassion.

We take comfort in the fact that he was able to do what he loved most and help others upon his death. He was our hero, and we are forever grateful that his legacy will live on.

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