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National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Firefighter
Year of Death: 1975

John Russell

Firefighter John Russell drowned during an attempt to rescue two occupants of a capsized raft at the Rockbottom dam on the Susquehanna River. Two other firefighters were rescued after the fire rescue boat flipped over. Chief John Cox and Captain John McGeever drowned the next day.

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  1. DAD

    I stood there days away from turning 3
    I heard the words spoken …:my Dad was taken from me
    I didn’t have a chance to know him
    I would never have memories of my own
    He died a hero…I guess that’s all I really need to know
    He gave his life to save two others
    He left behind me, my sister, and brother
    A proud firefighter who faced real fear
    Because of him so many more are still here
    From his death change was created
    Birthing new ways to save lives…maybe this was fated
    I carry in me so much pride
    But also pain because he died
    Life for me was turned upside down
    When this hero, my father, tragically drowned
    This loss still echos deep inside
    I still haven’t recovered even though I’ve tried
    Again let me say…I’m so proud of you
    And in case I never said it…I love you

    Matthew C. Russell

    – Matthew C. Russell