Dead firefighter buried in Lower Merion Township
Penn Wynne Overbrook Hills Fire Company volunteer firefighter died from injuries sustained in a fire on July 4.
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DeMuynck responded to a fire in Wynnewood just after 10:30 p.m. on Independence Day. About half an hour later, a distress call went out.
He was unconscious on the third floor of the structure and died in Lankenau Hospital.
DeMuynck joined the Volunteer Fire Company in 2019 after moving to the area from Canada.
His father told the grieving crowd that his son was his best friend, and he spoke fondly of his son’s love for hockey.
The widow of the deceased firefighter, Melissa Richard-Greenblatt, also stepped on the podium to remember him, not as a firefighter but as a husband.
“I will miss your smile, your laughter, the way you tease me about everything and how complete you feel you are,” said Richard-Greenblatt.
Increasingly moved DeMuynck Fire Chief Ted Schmid also spoke about the man who made volunteering a priority.
“Thank you for sharing your brother, son and husband with us. From the bottom of my heart, I’m sorry,” Schmid told DeMuynck’s family.
Firefighters from across the region came to show their respect, including the Phoenixville Fire Department 65.
Firefighter Tami Hopple expressed her sympathies on behalf of the department.
“We are all volunteers. We appreciate everything that volunteers do, but it has been a huge blow to our community,” said Hopple.
Residents who didn’t even know DeMuynck, like Carlotta Hutton of Haverford Township, also came to the memorial to support their local first responders.
“My heart goes out to all servicemen, and firefighters really should be recognized more than they are, and the same goes for the police,” Hutton said.
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