SPELTER, W.Va. – After the death of a Braxton County volunteer firefighter, the firefighting community is banding together to help where they can.

John Forbush, a 24-year-old volunteer firefighter for the Gassaway Volunteer Fire Department, passed away after trying to save a mother and daughter after their car went in the Elk River. The incident was later ruled a murder-suicide.

Now, some firefighters from north central West Virginia are trying to help pick up the pieces that have been left behind.

Deputy Chief Matt Shingleton of the Spelter Volunteer Fire Department Deputy Chief decided he wanted to help out and asked fire departments around Harrison County via Facebook for donations.

In five days, Shingleton was able to raise $3,700 and presented the money to Forbush’s fiance, daughter and younger brother on Saturday.

Matt Shingleton (left) donated $3,700 to the family of John Forbush. (Courtesy: Matt Shingleton)

“Firefighting is a big family. It’s a fraternity. We pick on each other a lot, it’s all in good fun. But, when one of us goes down, the other one, we’re left there to pick up the pieces and help the family out,” said Shingleton.

Funeral arrangements for Forbush have been set for Tuesday, May 10 at 11 a.m. at the Gassaway Baptist Church.

Shingleton is challenging other fire departments around the state to make a donation to the Forbush family too.

To make a donation, you can: