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'A good person' | Family of Greensboro Fire recruit who died during physical assessment remembers his life

Andrew Vaughn, a 36-year-old from McLeansville died on June 15 during a physical assessment with the Greensboro Fire Department.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — The family of a Greensboro Fire Department recruit is remembering his life and desire to help others after he died on June 15 during a physical assessment at the GFD. 

"He always wanted to be a caped crusader... or a fireman," said his mother Jean Vaughn in a statement through the Professional Firefighters Association of Greensboro.

Andrew Vaughn moved to Greensboro from Raleigh in 2020 and had his sights set on becoming a firefighter. He was selected as an alternate for the 75th and 76th recruit classes of the GFD but was still determined. He reapplied and was eventually chosen. The recruiting class was set to get started on September 1, 2022. 

His brother-in-law Jeff Owens said Andrew's desire to become a firefighter stemmed from an incident with his grandfather years ago. 

"His grandfather had fallen in his house and so the fire department was called to come over to help him up (...) and the fire department comes and helps him up and the way they treated him made a big impression," said Owens. "They dignified him and they took care of him."

RELATED: The Greensboro Fire Department is grieving the loss of a firefighter recruit

Owens, who also works for the GFD, said Andrew was a people person, something valued by the department. 

"Right now, we see a lot of need with people getting hurt, people getting sick and so he wanted to be there in their darkest moment to be able to help lift them up the same as he remembered his grandfather in his darkest moment," Owens said. 

According to Owens, Vaughn also loved to learn which drew him to the fire service.

"He was a hard worker and he was deep in thought, but also he loved to laugh," said Owens. "He was just a good person that could really fit in, not only with the department but with people in the community."

The service for Andrew Vaughn will be on Saturday, June 25 at 2 p.m. at the Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses in Greensboro. 

RELATED: Together they stand in honor of fallen firefighter as procession is held through Greensboro

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