Thousands of firefighters from all over the country are coming into Bryan Tuesday night and Wednesday morning to pay their final respects. The public memorial for Lt. Eric Wallace and Lt Greg Pickard is starts at 8 a.m. Wednesday near Central Baptist Church.
The City of Bryan and the Bryan Fire Department have had help planning the event, thanks to a team of fellow firefighters. Organizers are expecting nearly 150 fire departments to take part in a walking processional Wednesday morning. More could show up, though.
At Bryan Fire Department's Central Station, a group of people surround maps and charts. They're planning for a very difficult moment.
"If you've never seen anything like it, I think the City of Bryan will be very very proud of their firefighters," says Richard Gomez. He's the Line of Duty Death Coordinator. He's also a Houston Firefighter.
"It's like being the person who is planning your brother or your sister's funeral," shares Gomez. He along with representatives from the state and International Fire Fighters Association and local first responders are detailing road closures, staging areas, and transportation.
All to say good bye to two fallen brothers.
"The ultimate goal is what the family wants. We can come in and say 'we're going to do this and this and this,' but if the family comes in and says this is what we want, that's their last wishes and that's what we do," says Gomez.
The public memorial service honoring Eric Wallace and Greg Pickard is expected to draw fire fighters from around the world. Not all of them will be attending. Firefighters from Houston, Austin, Dallas and Galveston will staff Bryan fire stations during the memorial service and funerals.
Ready to keep Bryan safe while it says goodbye.
"The ultimate goal is making sure that they are honored, their family is honored as best we can," explains Gomez.
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