WOODLAND, Ill. (WCIA)– This was Dominic Smith’s final shift.
He leaves behind a legacy as a firefighter, fire chief, EMT, and loving family man. His wife Kimberly Smith joins him in the next life.
They met at a dance studio in Arizona and Smith eventually won his wife over after learning how to become an instructor and dance with her. They married in 1993, and were inseparable.
Chaplain david ashby
“And by the way when they got married,” Chaplain David Ashby said, “because Dom didn’t have enough money to buy the ring, Dom, because he knew how to make jewelry, literally fashioned their first wedding rings!”
One word that anyone who knew the Smith’s would use to describe them was dedication. Woodland’s assistant fire chief A.J. Kingdon said firefighting is all about tradition, and the dedication Smith brought to the job is a new tradition they plan to carry on.
“Being chief, he wasn’t afraid to get right in there and work,” Kingdon said. “He was always willing to show us a better way to do this or was more than happy to take a firefighter under his wing.”
Firefighters circled around the Smith family as they said their final goodbye. The circle representing firefighters’, and Smith’s, never ending dedication to serving the community.
His children said there’s a certain beauty in seeing all the lives their parents have touched coming together.
“I’m just very proud, and I’m very touched by how many people got to know them,” their daughter Brianne Clark said. “They’re just mom and dad to us, but then to see how many people they’ve touched, i’m just so proud.”
Two teenagers were in the car that hit the smith’s. Police say the driver, 18-year-old Blake Martell, ran a stop sign. 17-year old Clayton Harper was a passenger.
Harper’s grandmother said he was out in the snow for hours trying to flag someone down for help.
When he was taken to the hospital, Harper had to have his left leg amputated. His grandmother says their family is keeping everyone involved in their thoughts and prayers.
“Our hearts just go out to these people, it’s a bad situation for everyone. Clayton is going to have his life totally changed… he feels bad but there’s nothing else he could do,” she said.
Harper still has a few surgeries ahead of him. The family began a fundraiser to help cover his medical expenses. If you would like to donate, you can do so here.