OKTIBBEHA COUNTY, Miss (WCBI) – Victims of this week’s deadly fire in Oktibbeha County are being remembered by family, friends, and coworkers who knew and loved them.
When fire broke out on Bardwell Street in Oktibbeha County Wednesday morning, District 5 Volunteer Firefighter Geraldine Bradford Rice, who was off duty was among those three victims.
Clutching a large picture of her mother, a young daughter feels a great loss. She is not alone in her grief.
District 5 Volunteer firefighters who served with 44 year old Geraldine Bradford Rice remember her as a brave first responder.
“Good member, never missed a run hardly, never missed a meeting. She is always there for us. And she will be well missed,” said Terry Skinner, Chief, District 5 VFD.
“She was so dedicated to that job. You know she spent a lot of time and she didn’t have a lot of time to spend with us,” said Bettye Ashford, Sister.
Rice is being remembered for her unselfish and unsuccessful attempt to rescue an elderly Celia Robson from her burning home.
Rice and Robson’s grandson helped George Robson, who suffers from dementia, escape the blaze.
Then, they immediately went back in, to try to save the former MSU physical therapist.
“And we say don’t go back in but its hard not to go back in, you know if somebody is in there already. Left in there,” said Skinner.
“You know I just know that’s what happened, she had to go back in and try to save that lady,” added Ashford.
For Bradford-Rice there will be no more time and committment spent at the fire station, a place that she also called home, with her brothers who were first responders.
Or her immediate family, who loved her most.
“A great member of our fire department and she will be missed,” said Skinner.
“She was a good sister she was my sister and she is my best friend. And she is a good mother,” said Ashford.
The bodies of the victims have been sent to the Jackson for an autopsy and official identification.
George Robson, the husband of Celia Robson, survived the blaze thats still under investigation.