Former Georgia colleagues remember fallen firefighter

A former Cherokee County firefighter is remembered as a wonderful father and husband. Chuck McCormick lost his life in a Sunday morning fire.

Authorities say the 30-year-old walked into a home fire in Peculiar, Missouri. He fell through the floor and was critically injured. McCormick later died at the hospital.

“He’s the fireman you hope shows up when you call 911,” says Christian Kutas.

Kutas and McCormick worked together for the Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services, but McCormick moved to Missouri in 2017. That didn’t end their friendship though. Kutas made McCormick one of his groomsmen in his wedding just a few months ago.

Kutas says every firefighter knows the risk of walking into a fire. But he says they always hope it’s never expected it to be your reality. When asked about McCormick heading into that deadly fire, Kutas says “I know for a fact that chuck’s mindset when he went in was ‘let’s do it’. There’s a mission at hand, I’m here to do that.”

Kutas says he’s spent a lot of long nights with McCormick. And he remembers them fondly. He says Chuck was a caring person around the station, a wonderful father and husband. He was always doing something with his boys.”

Jonathan Gottfried also worked with McCormick. He says Chuck was “just a lovable guy. He helped anyone who needed help.” He goes on to say, “he was so goofy, but always got the job done.”

Gottfried describes McCormick as a “true hero.” He says, “he is a hero. He would hate this attention. He would laugh about it. He loved what he did. He was perfect.”

The Cherokee County Fire Chief, Tim Prather says, “I was deeply saddened to hear about the loss of Mr. McCormick.” He goes on to say, “I understand that Mr. McCormick was very respected by fellow firefighters and had established personal relationships with Cherokee Fire personnel that continued up until his passing.”

Chief Prather says in honor of McCormick’s contribution and sacrifices to the fire service, Cherokee Fire personnel are “authorized and will wear the traditional mourning badge in honor of the loss of our brother, Mr. Charles “Chuck” McCormick.”

McCormick leaves behind a wife, Rachel, and three young boys. Kutas says he was “always striving to be a better dad.”

Right now, Gottfried says “the fire department family is hurting. [McCormick’s] immediate family is hurting.”

Anyone who would like to donate to help McCormick’s family, a GoFundMe page has been set up: