The National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Weeeknd Will honor 226 Firefighters
May 4-5, 2024
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National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

District Chief
Age: 58
Year of Death: 2021

Robert “Bob” Forney

Chief Robert “Bob” Forney was a 25-year veteran of the Brimfield Fire Department in rural central Illinois. Bob held the positions of training officer and assistant chief before he was appointed fire chief of the Brimfield Community Fire Protection District in 2015. He was the epitome of leading by example and was well known for his attendance at training. His mantra was, “I’ve got mine,” in reference to his numerous certifications. Three of his sons followed in his footsteps and are members of the department.

Through his time as fire chief, he oversaw the completion of a new Fire Station 1 in Brimfield, Illinois. Chief Forney played a pivotal role in the unification of both fire stations in the district. Additionally, he oversaw the fabrication of Engine/Tender 199, the district’s largest fire suppression apparatus. He took great pride in maintaining the department’s fleet of fire trucks and ensured they were clean and presentable at all times.

Fire prevention was his passion. He spent countless hours perusing catalogs to order handouts, constructing education materials, and educating community members. Local children affectionately called him “Fireman Bob.”

He was actively involved in the community as a local 4-H leader, Peoria County 4-H poultry superintendent, and 4-H auction committee member. He was employed by the Peoria County Highway Department and was a member of Laborers Union Local 165.

Chief Forney contracted COVID-19 in November 2020. After a long-fought battle, he died from complications related to the virus. His tradition of leadership, volunteerism, service, and dedication live on in his family and those he taught.

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  1. Bob will always be remembered as a mentor to me. He always encouraged me to be my best and helped in any way possible. Love ya Chief!

    – Angela Beyer
  2. Thanks to Chief Forney for the leadership and friendship he always shared with all who served with him even on neighboring departments!!

    – Chris Murfin