FRIENDSHIP, Okla. (TNN) - A Friendship Volunteer Firefighter, who died while fighting a fire last August, is being added to the National Fallen Firefighter Memorial in Maryland this weekend. Only firefighters who died in the line of duty can be a part of this memorial.
This year Madison “Maddy” Clinton is one of 119 firefighters being added. Maddy died last August while fighting a fire at a home near Altus. The porch of the home collapsed killing him instantly.
"What was good about that day was that we all got to see him,” his wife Sandra said. “My older daughter and I had lunch with him that day. My younger daughter got home from work and got to spend some time with him, and it didn't happen that often that we all got to see him."
He had been a volunteer firefighter for more than 30 years.
"This was something he did because he liked helping out the community,” she said. “He spent many hours. There were many meals we missed. There were even holiday meals. If the fire pager went off, he went."
Since his death, he's been honored at the State Fire Fighter Memorial in Oklahoma City and now he's going to be nationally recognized in Maryland. Ron Siarnicki, the Executive Director of the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation, said thousands attend the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation's Memorial each year.
“The event is intended to honor the firefighters who died the previous year,” Siarnicki said. “But also to let the families of the fallen firefighter know that their loved one will never be forgotten and that there is an organization here in place to help them rebuild their lives.”
Sandra said to have someone who was from a small town in Oklahoma remembered on a national level is humbling. She said she’s had people and departments from across the nation reach out.
"It's been very overwhelming and very humbling to me throughout the year,” Sandra said. “It wasn't just then. They have called me, checked on me and been there for me."
Maddy’s wife and two daughters are going to Maryland this weekend for the ceremony. The National Fallen Firefighters Foundation is going to broadcast its candlelight service and memorial service on their website and Facebook page if you’d like to see it.