Close Window
Print Window
Return to Main News Page

In the News

City Honors Passing of Assistant Fire Chief Joe Darr
September 5, 2013 - September 9, 2013

Chillicothe Fire Department Assistant Chief Joe C. Darr, 62, of Chillicothe, died Wednesday, Sept. 4, at a Kansas City area hospital as the result of a duty-related injury. A Masonic service was held at 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 8, at Lindley Funeral Home, 910 Washington Street, Chillicothe, MO. Visitation followed from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. A fire service uniform walk through occurred at the close of visitation.

Funeral services were held at 10 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 9, at Calvary Baptist Church, 206 Locust Street, Chillicothe, with full fire service honors. Interment followed the memorial service at Resthaven Cemetery, Highway 65 North, Chillicothe.


C-T Photo / Catherine Stortz Ripley / Posted Sep. 10, 2013, 2:15 pm
The body of Chillicothe Assistant Fire Chief Joe Darr was laid to rest with full fire service honors Monday
morning at Resthaven Memorial Gardens. Darr had been employed with the Chillicothe Fire Department for 34 years.

Area fire department and emergency medical service organizations provided station coverage for the Chillicothe Fire Department so the members could pay homage to their Assistant Chief. The Missouri Fire Service Funeral Assistance Team assisted the Chillicothe Fire Department with the funeral services.

Flags hung from interstate overpasses and fire trucks and other public safety department vehicles were positioned at communities between Kansas City and Chillicothe Wednesday afternoon to honor Chillicothe Fire Department Assistant Chief Joe Darr, as a hearse carried his body home.

A procession of fire trucks, ambulances and other public safety vehicles make their way north on Washington Street in Chillicothe as the body of a long-time firefighter/EMT was brought from Kansas City to Lindley Funeral Home Wednesday evening. Along the route from Kansas City, all the way to Chillicothe, fire departments and other public safety personnel positioned their vehicles in honor of Assistant Chillicothe Fire Chief Joe Darr, who died on Wednesday. The cortege arrived in Chillicothe around 6 p.m. and was met by community members lining the streets to pay tribute to the 34-year veteran of the local fire department.

Departments accompanying the hearse through town included the Chillicothe Fire Department, Chillicothe Police Department, Livingston County Sheriff, Missouri State Highway Patrol, Chula Rural Fire, Wheeling Rural Fire, Meadville Fire, Heartland EMS, and Caldwell County Ambulance and Fire. Among those positioned along the route were Plattsburg Fire, Breckenridge Fire, Braymer Fire, Liberty Fire, Holt Fire , Lathrop Fire, KAW Fire, Hamilton Fire, Hamilton Police, Caldwell County EMS, Polo Fire, Green Township Fire, and Mooresville Fire.

Darr, 62, was an emergency medical technician and was employed with the Chillicothe Fire Department for 34 years. He was the Chillicothe Fire Branch Coordinator for the Region H Homeland Security Region Response System (Haz-Mat team), a position he enjoyed and was honored to fulfill. Darr was hospitalized in August and had returned home for a few days before being air-lifted to St. Luke's on Tuesday.

Flags Flown at Half-Staff for Joe Darr
September 9, 2013

Photos by Catherine Stortz Ripley

Flags are being flown at half-staff today at the Chillicothe FIre Department as a mark of respect for the death of Chillicothe Assistant Fire Chief Joe Darr, who died on Sept. 4. Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon issued a proclamation Friday ordering that the U.S. flag and the the Missouri flag be flown at half-staff at all government buildings in Livingston County from sunrise to sunset today. Funeral services for the 34-year fire department veteran are being held today with full fire service honors.

A large flag hung from a fire truck in front of Lindley Funeral Home during visitation for Joe Darr on Sunday.

Last Alarm for Firefighter - Assistant Fire Chief Joe Darr Laid to Rest
See photo above...

Amid quiet reverence during the graveside service of Joseph "Joe" Darr, a dispatch alarm broke the silence. It was the last alarm issued for Darr, who was a member of the Chillicothe Fire Department for 34 years. The alarm was followed by Chillicothe Police Dispatcher Tina Thompson's voice: Attention all agencies dispatched by Chillicothe Police Department. This is the last alarm assignment for Chillicothe Fire Department Assistant Chief Joseph C. Darr. Assistant Chief Joseph C. Darr answered his last alarm September 4, 2013 at the age of 62. He served the Chillicothe Fire Department for 34 years. The Chillicothe Fire Department is thankful for the service Assistant Chief Joseph C. Darr has provided to the community they serve. He will be missed.

Dozens of firefighters and public safety personnel from throughout the area and some from the far reaches of the state gathered in Chillicothe to honor one of their own by providing full fire service funeral detail for Assistant Fire Chief Joe Darr, who died Sept. 4, at the age of 62. Station coverage during visitation on Sunday and during Monday's funeral service was provided by other entities so that the local organization could pay homage to their assistant chief. Among those providing service were Cameron Fire, Carrollton Fire, Trenton Fire, Cameron Ambulance, Noel T. Adams Ambulance Service of Bethany and Grundy County, with assistance from Heartland Regional.

Funeral services for Darr were held at Calvary Baptist Church Monday morning with the Rev. Jeff Parker officiating. Darr's firefighting gear was placed next to the casket at the front of the church. Rev. Parker described Darr as an "unselfish, simple man who was comfortable around people... he honored them." Darr enjoyed serving the community and worked several jobs so he could be a firefighter, Parker stated. "He was willing to give of himself, sacrifice and work," said Parker. The service included Regional Haz-Mat Chief Bill Brinton reading the Firefighter Prayer. Assistant State Fire Marshal Greg Carrell offered comments about Darr and read the Governor's Proclamation. Corey Sloan, emergency management specialist, introduced representatives from the International Association of Firefighters and the Missouri State Council of Firefighters, who presented the Medal of Valor to Darr's daughter, Sara.

Darr was born in Chillicothe and was a 1970 graduate of Chillicothe High School. He was a lifelong member of Olive Branch Baptist Church in Chillicothe, and was a member of the Masonic Friendship Lodge No. 89 in Chillicothe. When asked by the Constitution-Tribune two years ago what inspired him to become a firefighter, Darr replied, "to be there for the kids." "He had a big heart," said Assistant Fire Chief Kevin Hoskins, who joined the Chillicothe Fire Department in 1979, a few months after Darr. "He loved showing the little kids the fire truck and talking to them about fire safety, our jobs, and what we do."

Council Makes Presentation in Honor of Darr - Daughter Presented with Flag, Medal and Certificate
C-T Photo / Calli Price / Sep. 10, 2013

CAPTION: Sara Darr, daughter of the late Joe Darr, is presented with a flag, medal and certificate by Fire Chief Darrell Wright and Mayor Chuck Haney during the City Council meeting on Monday, September 9, 2013.

At the regular meeting of the Chillicothe City Council last night (Monday) a special presentation was made in honor of the late Joe Darr, assistant chief of the Chillicothe Fire Department. Mayor Chuck Haney began the presentation, stating that Sept. 9, 2013, would be known as Assistant Chief Joe Darr Day. Following a brief introduction, a flag, medal and certificate were presented to Sara Darr, daughter of Joe Darr, by Mayor Chuck Haney and Fire Chief Darrell Wright. A few of the council members spoke about Joe Darr, including Councilman Wayne Cunningham, who said that although he is gone from sight, "he will always be with us." "Joe will be missed," Cunningham said. "Someone will have to fill some pretty big boots."

Return to Top

Close Window
Return to Home Page