Justin Townsend was a dedicated young man with a big heart. Everything about him was ‘Big Country‚’ from his 6′ 1” height to the size of his determination to succeed. He was born and raised in Dagsboro‚ as was his father. Anyone that knew Justin knew him for his big smile and love of anything camouflage. He came from three generations of volunteer firefighters and grew up hearing stories of his pop-pop Clayton and his father back in the day and knew in his heart that he wanted to be a part of that brotherhood.
Justin was an avid fisherman and hunter‚ an accomplished equestrian‚ and loved dirt track racing. Justin often enjoyed fishing with his father at their family pond‚ or they could be seen together at the local dirt tracks enjoying a good race. Justin learned his love of horses and cats from his stepmother. Justin also loved kids. He enjoyed sharing his love of horses and 4-wheelers with his fellow firefighter’s son‚ Wyatt‚ even taking the time to help teach the two-year-old all about horses. Hunting was a big part of Justin’s daily activities‚ as long as it did not interfere with the firehouse‚ and he often hunted with brothers from the DVFD.
Justin’s dedication to service was not limited to just the fire company. He was a member of the Sussex Tech JROTC since he began his high school career and would have continued until graduation. And he thought it was ‘cool’ to get to wear an extra day of camo‚ too.
As soon as Justin was of age and before‚ he wanted to be a part of DVFD. His drive to service propelled him to complete all of his requirements in record time. Nobody in the history of DVFD had done this. It was his want‚ his need to help‚ that pushed him to accomplish this. He felt honored to have such strong roots in both his community of Dagsboro and with the DVFD. He had plans to never leave the area and to continue the family tradition of service to the community that held his family seat.
Justin gave his all in everything he tried to do‚ and with that heartfelt knowledge I know he was happy to give his life to the service of his department and community. Some say it’s a tragedy for one so young to have been lost. I know he would say.’It’s not tragic giving your life for what you love and believe in.’ With that knowledge we will continue to serve.
‘Gone but not forgotten.’