Community honors fallen firefighter with red porch lights, memorial service

Local News

The City of Sterling is lighting up its neighborhoods with the color red in honor of a fallen firefighter.

On Sunday, the community was asked via Facebook to show support following the death of Fire Lt. Garrett Ramos.

“As we all mourn the loss of Lt. Ramos, we are asking the community to show support by replacing your porch light with a red light,” said the City in a Facebook post.

The 38-year-old was killed while responding to a fire around 11:04 p.m. Friday at 10031 Ridge Road, rural Rock Falls.

While Lt. Ramos was inside fighting the house fire, the door collapsed beneath him, necessitating a rescue operation.

“EMS crews attempted life-saving techniques en route to CGH Medical Center, where doctors continued their life-saving efforts to no avail,” said the Whiteside County Sheriff’s Office in a statement.

This is the first line of duty death in the history of the Sterling Fire Department.

Lt. Ramos served with the department since October 2012.

He leaves behind his wife and two young children.

The City of Sterling thanks the community for its support during this difficult time.

“The outpouring of love and many prayers for the Ramos family and the SFD family has been amazing and very much appreciated,” said the City. “We thank you from the bottom of our hearts.”


Visitation for Lt. Ramos will be 5 to 8 p.m. at Sterling High School Fieldhouse, 22 East Miller Road.

Uniform personnel are requested to be at Sterling High School Fiedhouse at 5:30 p.m. to participate in a uniformed walkthrough to honor Lt. Ramos.


Funeral arrangements are through McDonald Funeral Home, Sterling.

Services will be 10 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 9, at Westwood Sports Complex, 1900 Westwood Drive, Sterling.

There will be a memorial ceremony held at the main Sterling Fire Station, 110 W. 5th St.

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