From the Burnet Bulletin‚ January 1‚ 1997
He was a husband‚ a father‚ a grandfather and a friend. He gave a lifetime of service to the community in which he lived‚ giving of his time and energies wherever he was needed. And on Monday night‚ December 23‚ 1996‚ James Alvin Warwick gave his life in the line of duty.
Shock and disbelief were felt throughout the community. Christmas week as news of the tragedy spread City Hall workers struggled to conduct city business Christmas Eve‚ but were often reduced to tears as they fought to carry on.
Hundreds of mourners from Burnet and throughout Central Texas gathered Friday to pay their respects to a man who had been with the Burnet Volunteer Fire Department for thirty years. The 52-year-old firefighter was killed when he was struck by a vehicle while directing traffic at the site of a two vehicle accident on U.S. 281 North.
Warwick was a longtime City of Burnet employee‚ serving concurrently in a number of positions including building official‚ traffic engineer‚ zoning administrator and airport co-coordinator. He was a former city alderman‚ interim city manager and lifelong resident of Burnet County. Warwick had received his 30 year pin with the Burnet Volunteer Fire Department after serving since October 3‚ 1966. During his years with the department‚ Warwick served as president‚ vice-president‚ secretary‚ assistant fire chief and assistant fire marshal. He was also an EMS volunteer driver.
Warwick was elected to replace Burnet City Alderman Place 5 Derell Cowan in April 1978 and continued serving in that position until August 1983. He resigned his alderman post when he completed his new home just outside of the city limits of Burnet. He was then hired by the City of Burnet‚ serving as building official‚ planning and zoning official and airport coordinator. He was also in charger of animal control for the city and in charge of the city cemetery. In addition to those duties‚ he was acting city manger from April 27‚ 1988 to August 23‚ 1988.
City officials hailed Warwick as a loving family man‚ a grandfather who for example‚ knew no limits when it came to putting up Christmas lawn decorations for his grandchildren. He was known as a jack-of-all-trades who could do almost anything and was involved in almost every aspect of his community.
Burnet Fire Chief William DeLeon who was Warwick’s cousin‚ spoke of him as a firefighter who ‘usually first on the scene and usually the last to leave.’ Burnet City Alderman Bill Wilcox‚ who served as alderman with Warwick‚ said that he was ‘always interested in the welfare of the Burnet.’
Warwick is survived by his wide Ruth Warwick; daughters Lori Edgar and husband Jeff of Belton; Christy Fath and husband Don of Burnet‚ and Cheryl Frederick and husband Joe of Buhl‚ Alabama; son Tim Elrod and wife Kathy of Fort Worth; sister Barbara Young and husband Bill of Granite Schoals; mother Emma Warwick of Burnet; grandchildren Ashley and Lauren Edgar‚ Tyler and Courtney Fath‚ and Krystal‚ Bubba and Heather Frederick. He was preceded in death by his father J.A. Warwick in October of 1994.
Services were held at the First Baptist Church on Dec 27 with Brother Jim Owens officiating. Internment was at the Post Mountain Cemetery.
Emergency personnel from Burnet‚ Burnet County‚ Bernam‚ Horseshoe Bay‚ Marble Falls‚ Lake LBJ‚ Spicewood‚ Cass‚ Pedernales‚ LCRA‚ Lago Vista‚ the City of Austin‚ East Lake Buchanan‚ the Department of Public Safety and Cottonwood Shores among others were present at the funeral. In addition‚ members of Burnet Confederate Air Force conducted a fly-over of the gravesite in honor of Warwick.
City officials said that the new soon-to-be completed Burnet Fire and EMS Hall would be dedicated to Warwick within the next few months.