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National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Assistant Chief
Age: 58
Year of Death: 2013

Russell D. Gow III

Russell David “Rooster” Gow III, age 58, of Factoryville, Pennsylvania, died November 21, 2013, doing what he loved, courageously answering his final call.

Russ was born in East Benton, Pennsylvania, to the late Russell Gow Jr. and Evelyn Davis Gow. He was a 1974 graduate of Lackawanna Trail High School.

A grizzly of a man with the heart of teddy bear, Russ was very well known and respected for his duties as a dedicated first responder and a loving community servant. His passion was truly community service in every way. He never met a stranger; he could stop just about anywhere in the tri-state area and run into someone he knew. Russ was also infamous for his sayings, which many imitated but none could quite replicate.

Russ served as a 43-year life member of the Factoryville Fire Company. He previously served 10 years as chief and was currently serving as assistant fire chief and trustee. He was a 40-year member of the Nicholson Fire Company, a member of the Fleetville Fire Company, president of the Abington Area Line Officers Association, former instructor of the Northeast Pennsylvania & Susquehanna County Volunteer Firemen’s Association, a former Pennsylvania Department of Health EMT Instructor, a member of the Scott Dive Team, and a member of the NRA.

Russ enjoyed the outdoors and was an avid hunter and fisherman. His favorite time of year was buck season. He spent months preparing for it.

Above all else, Russ was a loving husband, father, and grandfather. He is truly missed by his wife, Sharon Butler Gow; daughter and son-in-law, Holly and Lance Ward; son and daughter-in-law, Brian Gow & Kara Waters; grandson, Brian Russell Gow, who was the light of his life; stepson and stepdaughter-in-law, Nick & Jodie Edder; stepdaughter, Jennifer Edder; and step-granddaughter, Emma Jean Edder.

Russ will forever live in the hearts of all who had the pleasure to know him.

Memorial Posts


Memorial Wall

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  1. Thank you for your service, and God bless you for your sacrifice.

    – Mark Bulla
  2. Rest well and easy Russ…you will never be forgotten

    – Scott Petty
  3. Best neighbor and friend a person could ask for. We miss you…

    – Christy Clarke
  4. One of the best Fire Chief I have ever known !!

    – Dale Richmond Jr
  5. Russ, you were always there for me; you always had my back while serving as Ambulance Captain. I will never forget you.
    Thank you for your service to our community and most of all thank you for our friendship.

    – Robert Brown
  6. Great man. It’s was great to sit and have conversations with you about the fire service. Rest easy my brother. Keep watch on all of us.

    – Ed Naughton
  7. My brother Russell love firemen and fire trucks since he was a baby. When he was for or five years old, he filled my mother’s Electrolux from the bath tub. We were lucky to have him for as long as we did. He touched everyone’s heart who met him .he was a treasure and he was loved by his natural family and his fire family as well as everyone in the area where he lived. He was a hero !

    Lynda Gow Nepa
  8. My husband, Russ, WAS the Factoryville Fire Company. At 58 years old, he was the second highest volunteer EMT to respond to calls. Add to that serving as Assistant Chief and Trustee. Yes, the fire company was his life. A life we all shared with him. I am proud to say he was my husband and will always be my hero, my chief! Thank you for honoring him.

    – Sharon Gow
  9. My father, Chuck Thompson was a member of the Factoryville Fire Company in the 1960s and ’70s. He once told us that Russ Gow was the only man he could completely trust in a burning building. Now they are both at that big fire hall in the sky swapping stories. God Bles you Russ.

    – Lynda Thompson Archambeault
  10. Great man! So close to him since I was litttle. Missing the hugs and kiss on the head when I would run up to see him. A wonderful neighbor and a better friend and firefighter. His smile was alwayso a blessing to see!

    – Alicia Semone Breita
  11. You are such an inspiration then & still are! You are missed every second of every day!! Love you &
    your God Daughter Eva misses you too…especially this time of year…you would give her a magic bullet, and each year she got her buck with that magic bullet!! Joe is still lost…we all are!! Until we meet again!!
    Thank you for all you did while here in our world!!

    – Cindy Rappenglueck
  12. He was a great guy to know he taught me a lot when I was a young line officer and even before. God bless you Russ for everything you have done and the people you helped

    – Fred Summerhill
  13. Thanks for your service RIP sir.

    – Garry hoover
  14. I knew Russ a long time. I can not say anything that has not already been said . He will be missed. Sincerely Fire police captain of Clifford fire department. Dale Jennings.

    – Dale Jennings