Honoring 3 Fallen Heroes


Volunteer Firefighter Fred Fedeler

Chester Volunteer Fire Department, South Dakota

EOW: April 22, 2023 | Age: 67 | Tour: 17 years

On Saturday, April 22, 2023, Firefighter Fred Fedeler was at the scene of an agricultural facility fire when he suffered a medical emergency. He was immediately treated at the scene and then rushed to the Madison Regional Health System. He passed away a short time later from an apparent heart attack. Fred proudly served on the Chester Volunteer Fire Department for 17 years. When not volunteering or farming, he enjoyed sports, such as watching their grandkids play, Friday nights on the chain gang, and being the “ball boy” for the Madison Warriors when they played at US Bank Stadium. He was especially proud to be able to play softball on the same team as both of his sons. He is survived by his wife, two sons, two daughters, and six grandchildren.


Deputy Chief Chester T. Lauck

Frederick County Fire and Rescue Department, Virginia

EOW: April 23, 2023 | Age: 66 | Tour: 14 years

On Friday, April 21, 2023, multiple fire and rescue stations from Frederick County, Virginia and Hampshire County, West Virginia responded to a wildland fire in Frederick County. The wildland fire burned several acres of brush and woods with total incident duration lasting approximately 7 hours. Deputy Chief Chester Taylor Lauck was the operator of the ultra-terrain vehicle (UTV) and performed firefighting operations, to include extinguishment with a hose line and applying a fire line. Approximately 2 hours after arriving home, Deputy Chief Lauck began to feel ill and 911 was immediately called. He was then transported to a heart specialty center where he was treated. During this time, he suffered multiple heart attacks and was put on life support. After additional diagnostic testing, the family decided to stop all life support. Deputy Chief Lauck passed away on Sunday, April 23, 2023. Chief Lauck was a life member of Round Hill Community Volunteer Fire and Rescue Company where he served as the Volunteer Fire and Rescue Chief for 14 years and held other leadership roles throughout his membership time there. He served as a Patrolman for the Virginia Department of Forestry since 1984 and assisted on countless wildland incidents and events. He retired from the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) Fire and Rescue Department as a Battalion Chief responsible for the Special Operations Division. Chester served in various positions as Firefighter/Medic, Lieutenant, Captain and Battalion Chief over a 22-year period from 1985 to 2007. He also worked for the Winchester Fire and Rescue Department prior to going to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA). Chet was also an active Member of the North South Skirmish Association where he served on their board of directors. He was also on the board of crime solvers in our local area for the last 15 years, was an alumni member of the FFA and, along with his wife, was very active with local 4H and FFA Chapters. They even built a chuck wagon for all the kids that is still standing today. Above all else Chester loved his family, his Fire and Rescue Family and was very proud that he and Becky were blessed to be “Mom and Dad” to so many firefighters. He is survived by his beloved wife, Becky, two sons, and 4 grandchildren.


Captain Roy L. Sewell Jr.

North Tazewell Volunteer Fire Department, Tennessee

EOW: April 24, 2023 | Age: 27 | Tour: Unknown

The Tennessee Highway Patrol said Roy L. Sewell Jr. was driving the firetruck on Cedar Fork Road near Cedar Grove Road when it ran off the right side of the road. Sewell was responding to a request for a landing zone for a LIFESTAR helicopter before the crash. They said the firetruck continued down the embankment, overturned and stopped upside-down. Sewell, the only occupant of the vehicle, was wearing a seatbelt at the time if the crash. THP said the crash happened at around 4:01 p.m. on Monday. No other vehicles were involved in the crash. "Roy was an incredible human being," said North Tazewell Volunteer Fire Chief LaRoy Brandt. "A young guy that actually grew up in the fire department." Roy was a dedicated husband, father, brother, and son. He loved The Lord, his family, and serving his community. His favorite pass time was spending time with his wife and little girl. Roy will always be remembered for his fun spirit, kind heart, and how much he loved and encouraged everyone around him. Roy never met a stranger who he couldn’t call “friend”, his time working at Walmart and for the Fire Department gave him the chance to meet and get to know countless people and touch the lives of more than we could ever know. Roy is survived by his wife Randi, their young daughter and unborn son.


This information is supplied by the Officer Down Memorial Page (www.odmp.org) and the U.S. Fire Administration (www.apps.usfa.fema.gov).