CHRISTOPHER (WSIL) — More than 70 firefighters gathered in memory of Kody Vanfossan who died early this year while fighting a fire in Christopher.
On Sunday, firefighters gathered for the first Kody Vanfossan Memorial Water Fight. His friends say Kody loved participating in events like this, which is why it was fitting to honor him with this friendly competition.
Longtime friend Travis Skinner says the day was about spending time together to keep Kody’s memory alive.
"It’s all about coming together and remembering Kody. Departments that we don’t even run with are here remembering him and enjoying the brothership," said Skinner.
The money raised will go towards a memorial fund which will offer scholarships to high school graduates looking to become first responders. The fund will also help small departments send firefighters to training and purchase small equipment.
"He’s smiling down on all of us today," said Skinner.
Kody’s father and firefighter, Brent Vanfossan, says his son loved being a fireman, a sentiment shared by his mother Mindy. She says since he was two years-old he wanted to be a fireman. She hopes the firefighters attending Sunday’s event know they helped honor his memory.
"Hopefully, we can eventually turn it into a two-day event, where there’s a fireman’s picnic, where there’s nothing going on except coming together and having fun," said Mindy Vanfossan.