Amazing Grace was the only sweet sound to cut through bitterly cold February day as first responders with black badges and heavy hearts honored fallen brother 24-year-old Timothy McCormick.
“It’s difficult to put into words,” said EMT instructor Hugh Bain. “It just gives us pause. We realize how precious and fleeting life can be and I think it kind of makes us step back and hug one another and realize it can be gone in an instant.”
Rows of ambulances lined each side of the street as Timothy’s motorcade made its way to Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral. Crossed ladders from Indianapolis Fire Department trucks made an altar of honor as his black draped ambulance pulled up to the church.
Light snow flurries kissed his American flagged draped coffin as his fellow EMT’s carried him into the sanctuary to honor his young life.
EMT’s from all over the state crowded into the church to say goodbye and some had to wait in the cold for before they were able to find a seat.
But Melanie Culp said these men and wouldn’t have it any other way. They had to be there.
“I know these men,” Culp said. “I work in the ER. I know them very well and they are family so it means a lot know that the city and country has supported them.
The closed service lasted about two hours. Friends said the most emotional moment was when Timothy’s mother spoke.
“She told us about his childhood,” said paramedic Nancy O’Brien, “and how he always ran to do this and ran to do that. She said once something was as big as an elephant or something and he said no mommy it’s big, it’s big as a whale. So he always had big dreams.”
Big dreams taken away too soon. But, by amazing grace his brothers and sisters on the front lines of life and death know those dreams will come true in heaven and Tim is still smiling.
“You never saw the guy without a smile on his face,” Bain said.