Over the weekend, while many of us were relaxing with friends and family and enjoying the summer weather, New Jersey firefighters were on duty ready to save lives.

One of NJ's bravest, Dennis Shennard, was no different.

He was a 52-year veteran of the Kingston Volunteer Fire Company No. 1 and sadly suffered a medical event at a training drill at the Middlesex County Fire Academy and passed away.

I was inspired by the words of his son Dennis, who honored his dad on social media.

"52 years he gave to his community, saving countless lives and property. He's probably looking down on this and thinking 'Well I was just doing what I loved to do.' Love you dad, you earned it all. This is a loss that will be felt across the community."

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Firefighter Dennis Shennard and his family. His son called the show this morning. If you missed it, please listen here.

Thank you to all the career and volunteer firefighters in New Jersey and across the country. Heroes all as you sacrifice for the rest of us. Missing family dinners, interrupted sleep and facing danger with cool professionalism all characterize the life of a firefighter.

You are appreciated.

We dedicated the show to firefighters today and the pre-show Facebook conversation.

If you want to show respect for this fallen hero, the memorial services will be open to the public.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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