COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – A procession and funeral will take place Wednesday for a South Carolina firefighter killed in the line of duty.
James Michael Muller, 25, who served the Irmo Fire District, died from injuries he sustained while battling a large apartment fire in the Columbia area on May 26. Several other firefighters were taken to area hospitals for treatment, including three from the Irmo Fire District.
A small procession for the Muller family and Irmo Fire District and area law enforcement agencies will escort the fallen firefighter from Caughman-Harmon Funeral Home, Lexington Chapel to Riverland Hills Baptist Church.
The community is invited to stand along the procession route, in a safe location, to pay their respects.
Muller’s family is asking that all non-firefighter personnel not wear black to the funeral. Instead, they want to see colorful attire in a special tribute to his life and family.
The funeral service will be streamed online at 2:00 p.m. You can watch it by clicking here.
Bryan Costello, secretary for the Professional Fire Fighters Association of South Carolina, said Muller was a dedicated member of the Irmo Fire Department and the International Association of Firefighters, and who “fearlessly responded to the call of duty” the day he died – just as he had done for the past seven years of his firefighting career.
“His selflessness and unwavering commitment to protecting the lives and property of others are a testament to his character and the values he held dear,” he said.
Irmo Fire Chief Mike Sonefeld said Muller was a highly respected firefighter that had a love and passion for the job.
Crews from the Columbia Fire Department and Irmo Fire District responded to a large fire at the Tropical Ridge Apartments on the afternoon of May 26. Firefighters were performing interior suppression when a collapse occurred.
Muller was trapped inside. He was taken to Prisma Health Richland where he later died.