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Remembering Thor Stish

Just last week in this space, I opined about how, as a community, we should resolve to better support our volunteer fire departments and rescue squads in our respective communities.

Since then, the Buckingham community has lost a young volunteer firefighter who was an inspiration to many in the community — including me — in a tragic car accident.

Not only did our community lose a son, nephew and friend too soon, but we also lost a dedicated volunteer who loved to serve Buckingham County.

Thurston “Thor” Stish set the standard for how young people should serve our community.

“It’s quite unusual for a person of his age to have a level of dedication to the community,” said Brian Bates, chief of the Toga Volunteer Fire Department — of which Stish was a member. “I have no doubt that he got that from his mom and dad,” Bates told The Herald.

Stish’s dedication is something that he’ll always be remembered by and that we all should be inspired by.

Even before he was permitted to join the department as a member, he was “chomping at the bit” to help and become involved, according to his dad, George, another man whose dedication to our community is unwavering.

“He couldn’t wait to join the fire department,” he said. “He turned out to every call. Even when he was a junior firefighter, he knew he couldn’t do much other than roll hose or put tools away, [but] he showed up and that’s what he did.”

Thor’s actions in the community should be more than inspiring to us — they should compel us to do good for others, whether it’s volunteering for our local rescue squads or fire departments, joining a civic club or organization or promising to help someone else daily.

As a community, not only should we rally around his family during their time of need, but we should dedicate ourselves to bettering our community for our family, neighbors and friends through service to others — just like Thor did.

Jordan Miles is managing editor of The Farmville Herald. His email address is jordan.miles@farmvilleherald.com.