WACO, Texas (FOX 44) – “The void is gonna be there for sure there. The thing I tell the guys all the time is that when the pagers go off, we have to remember why we’re there and know that those guys are going to be with us on every call”
Andy bird, the Assistant Fire Chief for the Downsville volunteer fire department, says fellow late firefighter Jeffrey Bucher loved everybody, always offering hugs and pats on the back.
“We’d be sweating, miserable, hot and he come up and give us a hug. That was just him. He wanted to let you know that he cared and that he was happy for you,” said Bird.
Jeffrey was also known as “Backflip.”
“We were at a fire call one day and he said ‘no yeah I can do it” and he did it. A backflip, flat-footed,” said Bird.
He was very involved in the fire department following in his dad’s footsteps and always willing to help out.
Jeffery’s favorite truck was the five-ton army truck, and that’s where his memory was honored.
“We actually did his last ride with his ashes in the fire truck, and we drove him back to the fire station in a fire truck,” said Bird.
Bryan Beavers, whose funeral was Saturday, was the department’s president. Bird says that anything the team needed, he got.
“He was a go getter. I mean, he was always ready to just do what he could. He was a big time supporter of the fire department,” said Bird.
Bird’s favorite quality about Bryan was his heart. He was willing to give his all to support the team.
“It’s an honor to get back on a truck and keep fighting fire for them,” he said.
As the volunteer fire department is now Down two men during one of the busiest grass fire season’s in McLennan County history. Bird emphasizes the importance of the community’s help through donations for things like fuel, snacks, and Gatorade.
“If your house is on fire and we’re not there, then who’s gonna put it out?” the firefighter said.