WEST, Texas (FOX 44/KWKT) — The City of West and members of its Volunteer Fire Department, are mourning the loss of one of their most dedicated and decorated firefighters and brother, Eddie Hykel.
On Tuesday afternoon, West Volunteer Firefighter Edward, or “Eddie” Hykel, responded to a vehicle fire close to the Hill-McLennan County line.
DPS Troopers provided traffic control along Northbound Interstate-35 near West.
As Hykel worked the scene, troopers say a Peterbilt truck traveling on the inside lane disregarded the cautionary measures in place and struck Hykel.
He was immediately transported to Baylor Scott and White in critical condition but he later died from his injuries.
Now, West Mayor Tommy Muska shares why this is a senseless loss for the community.
“He was just one of those types of people that you just love. It’s just one of those one of a kind, kind of guys. And, you know, he’d do anything for you. You know he, he was genuine. He he was funny. You know, he hard worker. He’d come to work early and leave, leave late, you know, just to get the job done,” said Mayor Muska.
Hykel had been a integral member of the city for over 15 years. Fighting alongside the West Volunteer Fire Department during the 2013 West explosion.
He suffered severe injuries but that didn’t stop his dedication to West.
Mayor Muska along with Jake Smith with TxDot, are reminding us the importance of the Move Over Slow or Down law.
“If you observe or witness a emergency vehicle, which can include a TxDot vehicle, emergency response, tow truck, utility truck, working on the side of the roadway, you must move over a lane if you can do safely. And if not slow down to 20 miles per hour below the speed limit, ” shared Smith.
Violators of this law can face fines up to $2,000 dollars in lesser circumstances.
“People are out there for a reason and you need to give them all the respect they deserve. And part of the hurt right now, is is, it was such a senseless death,” said Mayor Muska.
West Mayor Muska is also asking people to keep the City, the Volunteer Fire Department, and the Hykel family in your prayers.