By Ann Rubin
(KSDK) - Firefighters and family members gathered in Florissant Monday night for a memorial service to honor Chris Walsh.
Walsh was an emergency medical technician, and later a Navy corpsman assigned to the Marines. He was trying to save lives, when he lost his in Iraq.
Earlier this month, Walsh's funeral was held in Kansas. Many colleagues traveled there to pay their respects, but this service and ceremony were intended for his friends back in St. Louis. His family came in for this and watched as Walsh was posthumously presented with the medal of valor, the fire department's highest honor.
"I hope they remember he was a fine young man who served the City of St. Louis well and he served his country well,” said Fire Department Chief Sherman George.
Members of the military paid their respects too with taps and a 21-gun salute. For the honor guard, it was both a proud and a sad moment.
"As a Navy corpsman, that's a Marine to us. They take care of us and they're the guys that look out for us more than anyone else on the battlefield,’ said Marine Sgt. Chad Kinkelaar.
For friends, Monday was a difficult day. But they say Walsh lived a life of service, and died doing what he loved.
"From what I remember, he's always wanted to go over there and serve his country. And it makes me proud that he went over there and served his country," said Mark Waller of the Florissant Valley Fire Protection District. "He wouldn't want it any other way.”