Red, teary eyes today for the Red Oak Volunteer Fire Department near Andalusia.
"It's tough," said Chief Dudley Maddox.
Chief Maddox remembers Dennis Cheshire, a volunteer fireman who died Sunday. Cheshire answered the call for assistance from the Libertyville Volunteer Fire Department. He somehow lost control of his tanker while making a sharp left turn on County Road 32. Cheshire never made it to the house fire. The home ended up burning down but Libertyville firefighters say they seriously doubt it would have made any difference if Cheshire had made it.
"We don't know what happened. He ended up on the embankment," Maddox said.
Second cousin Mike Cheshire is also a volunteer fireman.
"He was a good man and a friend," Cheshire said.
Dennis Cheshire loved being a volunteer firefighter. He would always answer the call, dedicated to the Red Oak community. His last call was no different.
Cheshire had no formal training as a driver but he was considered the most experienced.
"He usually drove the tanker and he was good at it," said Mike Cheshire.
Meantime, the firefighter's death comes a little more than a year after the Red Oak Volunteer Fire Department lost fire chief Ben Martin in a motorcycle accident. Maddox took over a month later.
"You have to overcome it and it's all part of being a firefighter," Chief Maddox said.
Dennis Cheshire joined the all-volunteer force 4 years ago. On Tuesday family and friends will hold his funeral and say goodbye at the Red Oak Baptist Church which is right across the street from the fire station. Dennis Cheshire was married and had two grown children. He was 48.