CLAYTON, N.Y. (WWNY) - Fallen firefighter Peyton Morse was escorted Wednesday from Watertown to Cummings Funeral Home in Clayton.
Part of the procession was the Shaker Road-Loudonville Fire Department, where Morse volunteered while he was at Sienna College starting in 2018.
He eventually became an associate member of the department.
The Albany-area department’s deputy chief has been with the Morse family every day since Peyton went into the hospital in Pennsylvania. He traveled north with them when the procession brought his body back to the north country.
“He reminds me a lot of myself,” Jason Geary said. “He was basically like my little brother in the fire service.”
Geary says that Morse was eager to learn about his craft and was outgoing around the fire hall and he became close with many other firefighters.
When schools were shut down because of COVID, Geary says that Morse made the trip down from LaFargeville a couple times to hang out with the crew and go on calls.
“He’s a true brother,” Geary said. “He got it. He understood the brotherhood and the meaning behind it. And you can’t instill that into somebody. They just have to get that themselves and he definitely understood that.”
Geary was also in Wednesday’s procession to the funeral home. He says the outpouring of support from local fire departments and the community has been overwhelming.
“Numbing,” he said. “It shows that the brotherhood in the fire service is a big thing. The care, the support that is given to us. And the respect, no matter what agency you’re from, whether it’s career or volunteer, is huge.”
Geary is encouraging the community to keep up the support for Morse’s family. He says it will be a long healing process.
Calling hours for Peyton Morse will be held Thursday, March 18 from 2 to 6 p.m. at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Clayton.
Morse’s funeral mass will be celebrated at the church Friday at 11 a.m.