SUMRALL, MS (WDAM) - Family, friends and first responders from around the state honored Sumrall volunteer firefighter Alvin Beasley Sunday. The 80-year-old was laid to rest in the town he gave so much to throughout his lifetime.
Beasley was hit and killed Wednesday evening by a hit-and-run driver on Highway 589 at the Oloh Road intersection. Loretta Sykes, 53, was also killed. A third firefighter was injured in the accident. Crews were out working an incident earlier in the evening when the driver hit the firefighters.
A service was held at First Baptist Church in Sumrall Sunday, where Beasley spent much of his time. Beasley was an active and dedicated member, where he was the longest tenured deacon. Beasley also holds the longest church membership with Sumrall First Baptist.
"He served his lord first, he served his church, he served his community. And he died the way he lived. He died serving people, and what a tribute."
During the service, Senator Joey Fillingane said Beasley was the example of an "exceptionally lived life." "If we could live after it, the town and the state, we would be much better for it," said Fillingane.
First responders from across the state were in attendance, including Vicksburg Fire Department, Collins Fire Department and the Mississippi State Fire Bureau. Beasley was a volunteer fireman for the Sumrall Fire Department for 47 years and served as the fire chief for 15 years.
"Alvin Beasley is a name that will never be forgotten in this community," Sumrall Fire Chief Heath Sumrall said during the service.
A Sumrall firefighter rang a bell three times in memory and in tribute to Beasley's life and service.
"So we say goodbye for now, to an irreplaceable pillar of our community," said Sumrall. "We will honor the memory of this great man by continuing his work of making this fire department and this community the best place in the world."
Beasley was a very active member of the Sumrall Lions Club for 52 years and served as the President several times. He was selected "Citizen of the Year" by the Sumrall Development Foundation last year.
A procession of fire trucks made their way down Poplar and Main Streets. A final call and flyover followed at First Baptist Church Cemetery.
In the cemetery, over the radios of first responders, the final call was made across the airwaves.
"Lamar Dispatch to Deputy Chief Alvin Beasley, Deputy Chief Alvin Beasley has answered his final call. Thank you chief, for your years of service. Godspeed and farewell, and we'll take it from here."