Fallen firefighter's family grateful for city's support - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Fallen firefighter's family grateful for city's support

(Source: MFD) (Source: MFD)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

Loved ones of a fallen Memphis firefighter are opening up after the City of Memphis agreed to step in and help pay insurance claims denied by the insurance company.

Lt. Rodney Eddins' family is taking additional steps to keep the firefighter's memory alive.

Eddins' cousin is a firefighter and he said he thinks about Lt. Eddins daily, and he is proud the department and city are standing behind the family.

"He left such a good name," Craig Eddins, Eddins' cousin, said.

It's a name that is now on the walls of Fire Station 37 and on the engine. 

Eddins collapsed in April after fighting a fire on Marigold Lane. The fire was brought under control quickly, but when Eddins went back inside, he collapsed and was quickly taken to the hospital. He later died.

His death was caused by a heart attack.

"He's always been a big brother to me as well," Craig Eddins said. "I always try to follow in his footsteps."

Firefighters said Eddins left a legacy that will never be forgotten. They said his smile, laugh, and the way he was always there for anyone who needed it made him who he was.

"Proud. It lets me know he will always be with us," Craig Eddins said.

But now, it was time for the city to be there for his family. 

Recently, the city's insurance company, Hartford, denied his wife's life insurance claim.

The city stepped up and voted unanimously to approve a $320,000 payment to his wife.

"The city has stood behind us," Craig said. "I'm happy they are and I'm proud to be a city worker. I really am."

Craig said each time he hears the bells go off, he remembers Eddins.

"When that bell goes off and rings, I still feel him inside of me," Craig said. "I have a job to do for him."

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