September 19, 2017

Brian Sumrall - Firefighter Fatality - Houston, Texas

Brian Sumrall
Firefighter Brian Sumrall, age 39, died on September 17, 2017, on a highway near Batson, Texas.

Firefighter Sumrall was a member of the Houston Fire Department. He was also an EMT. He was based at Station 44. He had 15 years of service. He was also a senior captain of the Batson Volunteer Fire Department.

Brian was not on duty at the time of his death. 

Batson is 65 miles northeast of Houston. 

Brian was driving a tractor on a rural highway when he was hit from the rear by a pickup truck. Brian was ejected from the tractor. 

Tragically, Brian died at the scene of the collision. 

The circumstances of the accident are under investigation. 
 
Brian was on his way to load hay into the vehicle of a cattle owner impacted by Hurricane Harvey flooding.  During Hurricane Harvey, Brian helped pull people from their flooded homes in the Batson area and assisted drivers who were cut off by water and stranded. 

Florian, Patron Saint of
Firefighters, pray for Brian
and for those who have
lost him. 
Comrades describe Brian as a cowboy who enjoyed working with horses and cattle. During the hurricane he saddled up to rescue animals stranded by the rising floodwaters and then organized their food and veterinary care.

Friends and comrades describe Brian as an amazing man who went out of his way to help others. He would give you the shirt off of his back. He was kind in spirit. 

The members of the Houston Fire Department and the Batson Volunteer Fire Department are in mourning over the death of their brother. Brian was generous, giving and open-hearted. He will be forever remembered.

Brian's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He loved his family and they loved him in return. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Brian is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife, Rana, and his son, Gavin.

Thank you for your service to the community, Brian. 

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Brian is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 14, 2017

Francis Deschenes - Royal Canadian Mounted Police Fatality - Nova Scotia

Francis Deschenes
Constable Francis Deschenes, age 35, died in the line of duty on September 12, 2017, on the Trans-Canada Highway near Memramcook, New Brunswick, Canada. 

Constable Deschenes was a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, based at Amherst, Nova Scotia.  He had 12 years of service. 

Francis was known as Frank to his family and friends. 

Shortly after 6:00 p.m., Frank pulled over to help two people in an SUV with a tire change. The circumstances of the accident are not clear. However, a utility van collided with Frank's cruiser and he was mortally injured.

Tragically, Frank, succumbed to his injuries at the scene. 

The cause of the collision is under investigation.  

Frank was originally from northern New Brunswick. He worked as a traffic reconstructionist trained to investigate collisions and determine causes and as a member of the Special Tactical Operations/Tact Troop. 

Michael, Patron Saint of
the Police, pray for Frank
and for those who have
lost him. 
Frank was hailed as a hero in 2008 for saving a 26-year-old woman whose car was stopped on railroad tracks as a freight train sped toward it. In 2013 he received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee medal which honours significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.

The members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are in mourning over the death of their brother. Frank was a highly respected and dedicated professional. He had a helpful personality and a kind spirit. He was one of the good guys. He will be forever remembered.

Frank's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He died while coming to the aid of strangers. Frank was loved. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Frank is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife.

Thank you for your service to the community, Frank. 

Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for all who die while coming to the aid of strangers.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Frank is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 13, 2017

Roberto Medina-Mariani - Police Officer Fatality - Puerto Rico

Roberto Medina-Mariani
Agent Roberto Medina-Mariani, age 35, died on September 11, 2017, in Ponce, Puerto Rico. 

Agent Medina-Mariani was a member of the Puerto Rico Police Department. He was assigned to the Playa de Ponce Precinct. He had 6 years of service. 

Roberto was off-duty and was at a restaurant in a neighbourhood of Ponce. A group of several men robbed four people outside of the restaurant. Then the thieves entered the restaurant attempting to rob the customers inside. 

Roberto identified himself as a police officer. Gunfire broke out in which Roberto was mortally wounded and one of the thieves was shot. 

Tragically, Roberto, died of his injuries at the scene. 

Everyone connected to this robbery and murder are in custody. 

Michael, Patron Saint of the
Police, pray for Roberto
and for those who have
lost him. 
To the thief who killed Roberto, we ask this question: What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?

Roberto was a U.S. Army veteran.

The members of the Puerto Rico Police Department are in mourning over the death of their young brother. Roberto was a well-respected and well-liked officer. He will be forever remembered.

Roberto's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He was loved. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Roberto is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife and two children.

Thank you for your service to America and to Puerto Rico, Roberto. 

Pray for all who die suddenly. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

God save us from the thieves. They are killing us, Father. Amen.

Pray that Roberto is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 12, 2017

Julie Bridges - Joseph Ossman - Law Enforcement Fatalities - Florida

Deputy Sheriff Julie Bridges, age 42, and Sergeant Joseph Ossman, age 53, died in the line of duty on September 10, 2017, on a roadway in Zolfo Springs, Hardee County, Florida. 

Julie Bridges and Joseph Ossman
Deputy Sheriff Bridges was a member of the Hardee County Sheriff's Office. She had 13 years of service.

Sergeant Ossman was a member of the Florida Department of Corrections. He had 21 years of service.

Evacuations were ordered for Hardee County because of Hurricane Irma. However, both Julie and Joseph were required to remain in the County to perform necessary functions. 

Julie had worked all night at a local hurricane shelter. At about 6:45 a.m., Julie was returning home to pick up some supplies before returning to the shelter. Joseph was reporting for duty at the Hardee Correctional Institution which remained open despite the evacuation order.

For unknown reasons, Julie's patrol car and Joseph's vehicle were involved in a head-on collision. There were gusting winds and heavy rain at the time of the crash. Tragically, both officers succumbed to their injuries. 

Michael, Patron Saint of
Law Enforcement, pray
for Julie and for Joseph
and for those who have
lost them. 
The cause of the accident is under investigation.

The members of the Florida Department of Corrections are in mourning over the death of their brother. Joseph will be forever remembered.

The members of the Hardee County Sheriff's Office are in mourning over the death of their sister. Julie will be forever remembered.

The loved ones of Julie and of Joseph are devastated over their sudden and tragic deaths. They were greatly loved. They did their best. They will be forever mourned.

Oceans of tears have been shed for Julie and for Joseph.

Both Julie and Joseph are survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members who will forever miss them.

Thank you for your service to the community, Julie and Joseph.

Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Julie is in Heaven. Pray that she is at peace and is with God. Amen.

Pray that Joseph is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 11, 2017

William Mathews - Police Officer Fatality - Minnesota

William Mathews and his wife and son
Police Officer William Mathews, age 47, died in the line of duty on September 8, 2017, at a hospital in Robbinsdale, Minnesota. 

He was known as Bill to his family and friends.

Officer Mathews was a member of the Wayzata Police Department. He had 9 years of service with department.

Wayzata has a population of 3,688. It is part of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul metro area.

At approximately 12:30 p.m., William responded to a call that debris was obstructing Highway U.S. 12. He was clearing material from the roadway when a vehicle struck him. 

William was rushed to a local hospital where, tragically, he passed away from his injuries. 

The female driver of the car that struck him was arrested. The cause of the accident is under investigation. 

Michael, Patron Saint of the
Police, pray for Bill and
for those who have lost him.
William graduated from Pine Island High School and then earned a law enforcement degree from Winona State University. He had previously served with the Winona police as a reserve officer and with the Rochester police as an intern. After becoming a licensed peace officer in 1998, he worked for the Zumbrota Police Department as well as part time with the Olmsted and Goodhue county sheriff’s offices. He began working with the Wayzata Police Department in October of 2008, serving as a firearms instructor, field training officer and reserve coordinator.

The members of the Wayzata Police Department are in mourning over the death of their brother. Bill had a helpful personality and a kind spirit. He was one of the good guys. He will be forever remembered.

Bill's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He was loved. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Bill is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife and 7 year old son.

Thank you for your service to the community, Bill. 


Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Bill is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 8, 2017

Mark Diebold - Deputy Constable - Precinct 5, Tarrant County, Texas

Mark Diebold
Deputy Constable Mark Diebold, age 48, died in the line of duty on September 7, 2017, in Fort Worth, Texas.

Deputy Constable Diebold was a member of Precinct 5 of the Tarrant County Constable's Office. He had 9 years of service with the Constable's Office and had 14 years of service with the Tarrant County Sheriff's Office.

Mark was undergoing a training exercise after which he collapsed. Comrades began CPR and rushed Mark to a local hospital where, tragically, he passed away. It is believed he died of a heart attack.

Mark was well-known for a roadside baby delivery. In July of 2016, he stopped a speeding vehicle and found that the couple inside were speeding because of an impending birth. Mark intended to escort the couple to the hospital but the baby wouldn't wait and Mark and the husband delivered a baby girl. A photo was taken of Mark and the baby girl at her first birthday party. The photo was heart-warming to everyone. 

Mark with the child he helped to deliver
Michael, Patron Saint of the
Police, pray for Mark and
for those who have lost
him. 
Friends describe Mark as a consummate law enforcement officer and a great friend. He was a gentle giant of a man with an uptempo attitude and a kind spirit.

The members of the Tarrant County Constable's Office and the Tarrant County Sheriff's Office are in mourning over the death of their brother. Mark was a well-liked and well-respected professional. He will be forever remembered.

Mark's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He did his best. He was loved. He will be forever mourned.

Mark is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife and children.

Thank you for your service to the community, Mark. 

Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for all who die suddenly. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Mark is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 7, 2017

Libby Bell - a victim of Bullying in Adelaide, Australia

Libby Bell
Libby Bell, age 13, died on August 28, 2017, in Adelaide, Australia.

Libby took her own life.

Libby was a Year 8 student at Seaford Secondary College.

Her family states that Libby was subjected to several years of cyber bulling over Facebook, Instragram and Snapchat. She was also subjected to physical abuse from peers. On one occasion some nasty trolls filmed her having a drink poured over her at a fast food outlet.

Libby's parents are lobbying for a bullying-specific law to be put into place that would inflict harsher penalties on persons involved in bullying others. Libby's mother, Crystal Bell, intends to become an anti-bullying advocate in the hope of encouraging teens and younger kids to speak up if they are being bullied.

A funding site has been set up to help the family with expenses.

Libby's family describe her as a gorgeous girl with a kind spirit. Libby was also an
Saint Bernadette of Lourdes, who
said: "I am ground like a grain of
wheat.", pray for Libby and for
all who are ground down by
bullying. 
award-winning state junior life saver.

Friends describe Libby as a bubbly and spontaneous young woman.

In Australia, if you or someone you know needs help, call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or the Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

In the U.S.A., call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, day or night. A skilled counselor will be able to help you.

To any teens who are reading this:
~ Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a harder battle.
~ Do not contribute to another's downfall. Tomorrow or five years from now, it could be you who is being humiliated.
~There is nothing cool about human suffering.

Libby's loved ones are devastated over her tragic and unnecessary death. She was loving and she was loved in return. She will be forever mourned.

Libby is survived by many loving friends and family members who will forever miss her.

Pray for justice for Libby.

Pray for all who are tormented.

Pray for all who die young. They barely had a chance to live.

Pray that Libby is in heaven. Pray that she is at peace and is with God. Amen.

September 1, 2017

Gary Helming - Fire Fighter Fatality - Los Padres National Forest - California

Firefighter Gary Helming, age 47, died on August 31, 2017, in Kings County, California. 
Gary Helming

Firefighter Helming was a Battalion Chief with the Forest Service - Los Padres National Forest - Santa Lucia District, based at Santa Maria. He had 22 years of service with the Forest Service.

At about 8:30 a.m., Gary was returning home from working the Railroad Fire in the Sierra National Forest. A vehicle travelling in the opposite direction blew a tire and swerved into Gary's vehicle head-on. 

Tragically, Gary succumbed to his injuries.

The driver of the other vehicle, Antonio Avalos, age 25, of Santa Maria, was severely injured and was flown by helicopter to a local hospital. 

Florian, Patron Saint of
Firefighters, pray for Gary
and for those who
have lost him. 
Gary first started working for the Forest Service more than two decades ago as a seasonal firefighter. He worked other agencies before returning to the Forest Service to serve as Battalion Chief in 2013 in Santa Maria.

Gary's firefighting comrades are in mourning over the death of their brother. Forest Service officials stated that Gary was a professional and a tremendous leader. He was thoughtful, a team player and an honorable man. He will be forever remembered.

Gary's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He was loved. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Gary is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members including his wife and three children.

Thank you for your service, Gary.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that Gary is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

August 31, 2017

Robert French - Sheriff's Department Fatality - Sacramento County, California

Robert French
Deputy Sheriff Robert French, age 52, died in the line of duty on August 30, 2017, in Sacramento, California.

Deputy Sheriff French was a member of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department. He had 21 years of service.

Robert was known as Bob to his family and friends.

At about 10:30 a.m., Robert and other law enforcement officers from several jurisdictions were involved in an auto theft investigation. Two women were taken into custody in connection with a stolen vehicle. Officers had a search warrant for a room in a Sacramento hotel. When two California Highway Patrol officers knocked on the door, a male inside started firing with a rifle. Both officers were wounded.

The shooter then ran out to the room's balcony and opened fire on Robert French, mortally wounding him.  Tragically, Robert died on the way to the hospital.

The male suspect (in his early 30's) jumped from the balcony and lead officers on a chase before he crashed the vehicle. He started shooting again and was himself shot by officers and taken into custody. 

The Sacramento County Deputy Sheriff’s Association has established a memorial
Michael, Patron Saint of the Police, pray for Robert
and for those who have lost him.
fund for Deputy French. Checks made out to “Robert French Memorial Fund” may be sent to 2843 Manlove Road, Sacramento, CA 95826 or donations may be made online at Cahpcu.org.

The members of the Sacramento Sheriff's Department are in mourning over the death of their brother. Robert was a well-respected officer who was looked up to as a mentor by many of his comrades. He had a winning smile and an upbeat attitude. He will be forever remembered.

Robert's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He did his best. He was loved. He will be forever mourned.

Robert is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members who will forever miss him.

Thank you for your service to the community, Bob.

Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for justice for Robert French.

God save us from the psychopaths. They are killing us, Father. Amen.

Pray that Robert is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

August 28, 2017

U.S. Navy Fatalities - U.S.S. John S. McCain collision in Asia

A terrible tragedy occurred on August 21, 2017, in the Malacca Strait near Singapore.

The U.S.S. John S. McCain collided with a merchant oil tanker. The U.S.S. John S. McCain is a guided missile destroyer.

From left: (top) Jacob Drake, John Hoagland, Dustin Doyon, Kevin Bushell, Timothy Eckels Jr., (bottom) Charles Nathan Findley, Kenneth Smith, Logan Palmer, Abraham Lopez. Not pictured: Corey Ingram

The collision caused flooded compartments inside of the American vessel. 

As a consquence, 10 Navy personnel lost their lives. 

Tragically deceased are:

Charles Nathan Findley, 31, Electronics Technician 1st Class Charles, from Amazonia, Missouri
Abraham Lopez, 39, Interior Communications Electrician 1st Class, from El Paso, Texas
Kevin Sayer Bushell, 26, Electronics Technician 2nd Class, from Gaithersburg, Maryland
Jacob Daniel Drake, 21, Electronics Technician 2nd Class, from Cable, Ohio
Timothy Thomas Eckels Jr., 23, Information Systems Technician 2nd Class, from Manchester, Maryland
Corey George Ingram, 28, Information Systems Technician 2nd Class, from Poughkeepsie, New York
Dustin Louis Doyon, 26, Electronics Technician 3rd Class, from Suffield, Connecticut
John Henry Hoagland III, 20, Electronics Technician 3rd Class, from Killeen, Texas
Logan Stephen Palmer, 23, Interior Communications Electrician 3rd Class, from Decatur, Illinois
Kenneth Aaron Smith, 22, Electronics Technician 3rd Class, from Cherry Hill, New Jersey

Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin was relieved of his duty as the commander of the US 7th 
Fleet, based in Yokosuka, Japan, following the incident.
Light a candle for these men. Light their way
to Heaven.

The entire tragic incident is under investigation.

The naval comrades of these men are in mourning over the deaths of their brothers. These men died as patriots in the service of their country. They will be forever remembered.

The loved ones of these men are devastated over their sudden and tragic deaths. They will be forever mourned.

Tears, beyond measure, have been shed for these men.

Thank you for your service to America, Gentlemen.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

Pray that each of these men is in Heaven. Pray that each man is at peace and is with God. Amen.

August 25, 2017

Matthew Turcotte - U.S. Army Fatality - Colorado

Matthew Turcotte
Spc. Matthew Turcotte, age 20, of North Smithfield, Rhode Island, died in the line of duty on August 23, 2017, at Fort Carson, Colorado. 

Spc. Turcotte was assigned to the 2nd Infantry Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.

In the early morning hours, Matthew and other soldiers were engaged in a live-fire exercise at Fort Carson. 

At about 2:30 a.m., Matthew was accidentally shot. He was given extensive medical aid on site. Tragically, he succumbed to his injuries. 

The circumstances of his death are under investigation. 

Matthew graduated from North Smithfield High School in 2015. He enjoyed playing football while in high school. He joined the Army in August of 2015 and was deployed to Kosovo in 2016.

His awards include the Army Achievement Medal, National Defense Service Medal,
Angels of God, pray for Matthew and for
those who have lost him.
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Ribbon and the NATO Medal. 


Matthew's military comrades are in mourning over the death of their young brother. He was committed to his service. He was one of the good guys. He will be forever remembered.

Matthew's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. He was loved. He did his best. He will be forever mourned.

Matthew is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members who will forever miss him.

Thank you for your service to America, Matthew.

Pray for all who die in the line of duty.

Pray for all who die by misadventure. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.


Pray for all who die young. They barely had a chance to live.

Pray that Matthew is in Heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.