Cape Girardeau firefighter among those to be honored in memorial ceremony

detail of a fire engine (Source: Storyblocks)

KINGDOM CITY, Mo. (KBSI) – A Cape Girardeau firefighter who died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty will be one of seven fallen fighters to be honored in two memorial services May 14 and 15 at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri in Kingdom City.

Captain Ivan LaGrand was a 25-year-veteran of the Cape Girardeau Fire Department. Captain LaGrand died December 1, 2021 from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.

Missouri’s fire service will hold two memorial services at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri in Kingdom City to honor the state’s fallen firefighters.

On Saturday, May 14, at 9 p.m., a candlelight vigil will be held for all Missouri firefighters who have died while serving their communities.

On Sunday, May 15, at 10:30 a.m., a memorial service will be held in which the names of seven Missouri firefighters including Captain LaGrand, who died in the line of duty will be added to the monument wall. The wall commemorates Missouri firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice while bravely serving their fellow Missourians.

Four of the firefighters died in 2021. Three firefighters, whose line of duty deaths from past years have recently been confirmed, will also be recognized. Other Missouri firefighters who passed away will also be remembered during the ceremonies.

May 15 is Fire Service Memorial Day in Missouri.

Both events will take place at the Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, located one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection (I-70 Exit 148) in Kingdom City. In case of inclement weather, the events will be moved to Auxvasse Elementary School, 650 E. Harrison St., Auxvasse, Mo.

The Missouri Fire Fighters Memorial Foundation Board has approved these additions to the Wall of Honor:

Firefighter Rodney Heard, St. Louis Fire Department, June 15, 2021
Firefighter Heard, a 25-year veteran of the St. Louis Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.

Battalion Chief Marvin Shaffrey, Cedar Hill Fire Department, Nov. 2, 2021
Battalion Chief Shaffrey, a 42-year veteran of the Cedar Hill Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.

Captain Ivan LaGrand, Cape Girardeau Fire Department, Dec. 1, 2021
Captain LaGrand, a 25-year-veteran of the Cape Girardeau Fire Department, died from complications as a result of contracting COVID-19 in the line of duty.

Assistant Chief Bryant Gladney, Boone County Fire Protection District, Dec. 22, 2021
Assistant Chief Gladney, a 25-year veteran of the Boone County Fire Protection District, died from injuries sustained when a tractor trailer struck his vehicle while he was staged at the scene of a prior motor vehicle accident.

Rescue Specialist Ralph Aaron Goddard, Springfield Fire Department, June 21, 2015
Rescue Specialist Goddard, a 12-year veteran of the Springfield Fire Department, died as a result of occupational cancer.

Firefighter George W. Shoemaker, Brookfield Fire Department, Jan. 10, 1942
Firefighter Shoemaker, a four-year veteran of the Brookfield Fire Department, died from injuries sustained when he fell from a ladder while fighting a commercial structure fire.

Foreman Cornelius C. Crowley, St. Joseph Fire Department, Jan. 8, 1908
Foreman Crowley, a 15-year veteran of the St. Joseph Fire Department, died from lung congestion after being overcome by smoke while fighting a commercial structure fire.

Saturday, May 14

  • WHAT: Candlelight vigil honoring Missouri firefighters who died serving Missouri’s fire service
  • WHO: State First Marshal Tim Bean
  • Leaders of the Fire Fighters Association of Missouri
  • Families and friends of those who died
  • Firefighters from across Missouri
  • WHERE: Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection, Kingdom City
  • WHEN: 9 p.m. Saturday, May 14

Sunday, May 15

  • WHAT: Memorial service honoring Missouri firefighters who died serving Missouri’s fire service
  • WHO: Department of Public Safety Director Sandy Karsten
  • State Fire Marshal Tim Bean
  • Leaders of the Fire Fighters Association of Missouri
  • Families and friends of those who died
  • Firefighters from across Missouri
  • WHERE: Fire Fighters Memorial of Missouri, one block northwest of the I-70 & U.S. Highway 54 intersection, Kingdom City
  • WHEN: 10:30 a.m. Sunday, May 15

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