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JOHN RICHARD MEYERS

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JOHN RICHARD MEYERS COLCHESTER - John Richard Meyers, age 46 of Colchester, died on Sept. 4, 2013, after a brave and determined 15-year battle with cancer. He passed peacefully in the Respite House in Williston, with his family at his side. John was born June 20, 1967, in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., son of Richard and Pamela (Fisher) Meyers of Jericho. He was a graduate of Rice High School, class of 1985, but attended high school for the first three years at Patch American High School in Germany while living abroad with his family. He attended Clarkson and UVM. On Aug. 10, 1991, he married Katrina (Hoes) Meyers at Trinity Episcopal Church in Shelburne. They recently celebrated their 22nd anniversary together. John started his career after UVM as an overnight DJ at WVMT radio. From there, he went to become News Director at WEZF radio. Sales called to him and he moved to advertising sales there, selling to accounts large and small. Having always been a car guy, he moved to selling cars at Saturn of South Burlington for Freedom Partners. He went on to manage the Freedom Chevy-Jeep dealership in Waterbury before returning to South Burlington to manage at Chrysler and Saturn before his health forced him to leave full time work. In addition to his paid careers, his passion was being a member of the Colchester Center Volunteer Fire Company. He always wanted to be a firefighter and joined shortly after his marriage. His dedication to the fire company took him through Engineer, Lieutenant, Captain and trainer as a fireline officer until his health made it so that he could no longer respond to calls. Not willing to stop volunteering and leave the fire service, he became PR Officer and President of the company until last year when his health further prevented that level of activity. Even though he couldn't fight fire, he often showed up at fire calls, wearing his helmet and coat, armed with a camera, chair, and coffee and took pictures. He launched the company's Facebook page and kept the community apprised of the important work they do at CCVFC. During his 22 years on the company, he trained and inspired countless firefighters both from the Center and Saint Michael's Fire, many of whom have gone on to full-time fire service careers. Last year, his daughter became a junior member and his son plans to when he is old enough, continuing his legacy in the fire service. Fighting cancer for the children's entire lives made it so that he was not able to do many of the traditional fatherly things he wanted to, such as coaching sports or being active in scouts. But he used his love of photography to document the kids' activities, for many years providing a year-end DVD of photos of all kids in the group for the parents to enjoy. He attended every sporting event, concert, and performance that he could, either walking, with a cane, or in a wheelchair. His determination meant that he spent many more years with his family than the doctors ever predicted. He is survived by his wife, Katrina; daughter, Meghan (16); son, Liam (13); his parents, Richard and Pamela Meyers; sisters, Kara Miller and Jen Meyers; and many cousins, aunts, uncles, and family friends. John saw everyone as family, especially his fire brothers and sisters on many departments. During his illness, his friends and fire brothers and sisters came to his bedside nightly to keep him company and continued to be entertained by his antics, even as he weakened. His family cannot sufficiently express their gratitude for the support of family, friends, and our brothers and sisters of the fire service. This support carried his family through his long illness to the peaceful end of his life. Calling hours will be held at Ready Funeral Home, Mountain View Chapel on Pinecrest Drive in Essex on Saturday, Sept. 7, 2013, from 3 to 6 p.m. Memorial services will be held at Essex Alliance Church on Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, at 2:30 p.m. A Firemen's Funeral Parade and graveside service will follow at the cemetery behind Colchester Center Fire Company on Main Street. Online condolences may be made to www.readyfuneral.com. Contributions in lieu of flowers may be made in John's name to Colchester Center Volunteer Fire Company, 483 Main St., Colchester, VT 05446.

Published in The Burlington Free Press on Sept. 6, 2013
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