North Carolina fallen firefighters to be honored at National Memorial Service, Oct. 6

Press release from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation: 

The U.S. Fire Service will honor five firefighters, who died in the line of duty, from North Carolina during the 38th National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service on Sunday, October 6, 2019.  They are among the 92 firefighters who died in the line of duty in 2018 and 27 firefighters who died in previous years who will be remembered at the official national service at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Maryland.

Firefighter Michael G. Goodnight, age 55, of the West Liberty Fire Department, died on July 4, 2018, after being involved in a two-motor vehicle accident while responding to a traffic incident.

Assistant Chief Jeff Holden, age 32, of the Orange Rural Fire Department, died on August 13, 2018, after responding to a trench rescue call that was stressful and strenuous.

Captain Michael E. Pennell, age 49, of the Central Alexander Fire Department, died on April 17, 2017, after suffering a medical emergency while performing apparatus maintenance.

Chief Romulus S. Spencer III, age 51, of the Engelhard Fire and Rescue Department, died on June 3, 2018, after suffering cardiac arrest at his residence several hours after participating in required FF I & II hose certification training.

Engineer William Willis, age 34, of the Asheville Fire Department, died on February 27, 2018, from complications of kidney cancer. His death was ruled a line-of-duty death by the North Carolina Insurance Commission.

Their names will be added to the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial on the Academy grounds. The national tribute is sponsored by the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF) and the Department of Homeland Security’s U.S. Fire Administration.

More than 5,000 people, including families, friends, members of Congress, Administration officials and firefighters are expected to attend on Sunday. Firefighter Honor Guards and Pipe & Drum units from across the U.S. will participate in this national remembrance.

For a complete list of fallen firefighters being honored and a widget to display their information on your website, along with Memorial Weekend related videos, photos, media and broadcast information go to

About Community Bulletin
Mountain Xpress posts selected news and information of local interest as a public service for our readers. To submit press releases and other community material for possible publication, email

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.