TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNT) – Firefighters risk their lives every day to make sure that we are safe and unfortunately some lose their lives in the line of duty. KSNT News saw firsthand the impact firefighters, who made the ultimate sacrifice, had on their family and department.
The Topeka Fire Department’s flag at half-staff… one bell ringing 14 times… all for remembering fallen Topeka Firefighters – past or present.
“Captain Tony P. Cox. August 13, 2007,” Michael Martin, Topeka Fire Marshal said.
White roses for those who fell in the line of duty.
“There is no better example of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice for the betterment of the community.”
One of those fallen firefighters was Captain Tony Cox.
“Captain Cox died while performing fire ground activities while fighting an apartment fire in temperatures in excess of 100 degrees,” Martin said.
Family of Cox remembering him as a leader for their family and the department.
“He was of course the oldest so he was the babysitter when mom and dad were working and he was in charge,” Dorothy Karnowski, the sister of Tony Cox said. “I think that’s why he liked being a captain. He liked to lead and be in charge too.”
“Even with his volunteer service and his city service,” Karnowski said. He had a lot of years in to help this community.”
Cox was a 21-year veteran of the Topeka Fire Department. He even helped start and train the Haz-Mat team.
“Tony was always passionate about training for his guys. He called them his guys and he was very committed to hazmat training. He did a lot of training,” Karnowski said. “He was a trainer.”
But Cox wasn’t all about business…
“You know he’d probably be pulling some kind of prank on somebody. It’d probably be me. So you know tony was a good guy.”
“He had said several times that if he was going to go, it was going to be at work and that’s the way it happened,” Martin said.
“We are extremely proud for him to give it all to this community to help save people,” Karnowski said.