MENANDS: Village mourns loss of firefighter

Last week, Menands firefighters and village officials placed the name of Capt. Edgar Scott below the company's shield in memory of the fallen firefighter.

Scott, 75, a 29-year veteran of the fire company, is the first volunteer killed in the line of duty in the department's 83-year history.

Scott was killed Tuesday, April 3, when his emergency response vehicle collided with a propane tanker on Interstate 787.

He and two other volunteers were responding to a motorcycle accident on the busy interstate at the peak of rush hour traffic shortly after 5 p.m. Scott was thrown from the vehicle and died at the scene.

Lt. Edward Himes and fire police officer Diane Brunelle, who accompanied Scott to the scene, were both hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries, according to police.

News of Scott's death has resonated through the firefighter community in Colonie. The Menands department is one of 12 in the town of Colonie.

He was part Don Rickles, part Red Skelton, said Menands Mayor Tom Coates. Coates was sworn in as mayor the day before the accident. Some people have used the word "icon" to describe Scott, one of the company's oldest active volunteers.

Scott, who stood more than 6 feet tall and weighed more than 220 pounds, was a formidable man who was tough, and would never shirk away from any task, Coates said, sharing stories with Fire Chief Frank Primo last week.

Scott was known in the department for his sense of humor, often cracking jokes about his longevity -- a family trait.

Despite his age, he was always on call, doing the dirty work of diverting traffic at the scene of accidents and fires, said Coates. It was a job he took upon himself when most active firefighters retire. He died doing something he did dozens of time.

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