Popular firefighter dies

Retired Surrey Fire Battalion Chief Don Brucker died on Jan. 3 - Photo submitted
Retired Surrey Fire Battalion Chief Don Brucker died on Jan. 3
— image credit: Photo submitted

The memorial service for a highly respected Surrey fire battalion chief will be held this week.

Don Brucker died peacefully surrounded by his family in Surrey on Jan. 3.

He was 76.

He is survived by Violet, his wife of 56 years, along with his children Crystall, Andy, Tammy and Brian. He is also survived by his sister Hilda and brother Robert.

His reputation with the Surrey Fire Service was legendary, according to retired firefighter Lorne West.

When there was a fire, Brucker was the first one in and the last one out, West said, adding he was fearless.

"He was fierce and tough," West said Thursday. "It didn't matter where the flame was, or where the smoke was... he walked through walls, nothing stopped him."

Deputy Fire Chief Jon Caviglia served under Brucker and said he was a man of few words, but when he spoke, people listened.

"Mostly what I remember about Don is how he gave back to the Fire Service and the community," Caviglia said. "He was the second recipient of the Red Powell Award in 1994," speaking of the highest award a Surrey firefighter can receive from their peers, of which only about a dozen have been given out.

It's Brucker's kind of giving back to the community that's become a hallmark of the Surrey Fire Service, Caviglia said.

"He helped set that culture early on, which the Surrey Firefighters are so well known for now," Caviglia said.

A memorial service will be held on Friday, Jan. 11, 1 p.m. at the Barge Inn, at 7372 144 St.

No flowers by request, however, donations can be made to the Kinsman Lodge or the Surrey Fire Deptartment Charitable Organization.




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