Scottsville Firefighter Dead At 25

By: Venton D. Blandin
By: Venton D. Blandin

March 23, 2006

The firefighting community is grieving after losing one of their own. 25-year-old Scottsville firefighter, Brian Spradlin, passed away from leukemia. Here is the heartfelt story about the young man, and the community who did so much to help him fight the disease.

"We've been having fundraisers in the community, dances, spaghetti dinners, jars at community stores, [and] we went door to door," said Casey Woodzell of the Scottsville Volunteer Fire Department.

All this to help pay for Brian Spradlin's medical bills while suffering from leukemia.

Spradlin died Thursday morning after fighting the disease for 11 months. The 25-year-old was a single father of a four-month-old son.

"He's be laying in the hospital bed holding that baby. He was very proud of that son," said Tim Karr, the Chaplain of the Scottsville Volunteer Fire Department.

"I'm sad. I feel really sorry for the family," added Woodzell.

Doctors at the University of Virginia hospital said there was nothing else they could do. The volunteer firefighter's cancer did go into remission, but then came back, not just once, but twice. His family got a second opinion.

"Everybody's feeling and hope was when we got the second opinion, and got him down to Duke that [he'd] get the treatment, and put it into remission," said Chief Tim Cersley of Scottsville Volunteer Fire Department.

"It was shock. It really was. He had traveled to Duke [University], and received the treatment, and was cancer-free," added Chaplain Karr.

That prompted Spradlin's colleagues to call on the community for help. The community answered.

"What little bit we've done as far as donations and allowing them to put a jar in [the store] and what have you--you know, it's a help, but it's just something that neighbors do for neighbors," said Joe Hale, the owner of the Scottsville IGA Store.

The fire chief says Spradlin's immediate family along with his extended family at the fire department will help care for his four-month-old son.

Funeral arrangements for Brian Spradlin are as follows:

Thacker Brothers Funeral Home
650 Valley Street
Scottsville, Virginia 24590
(434) 286-2791

Family Night - Friday, March 24, 2006; 6:00 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Funeral - Saturday, March 25, 2006; 2:00 p.m.

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