An online fundraiser has been set up for the family of a seven-year veteran of North Whidbey Fire and Rescue after the man passed away on Monday.
Tyler Rico, 32, was a volunteer firefighter and EMT and worked full-time in the administrative office for the fire district, Battalion Chief Steve Lacy said. He had also been a firefighter with Central Whidbey Fire and Rescue for several years.
“The entire department is reeling,” said Lacy. “Tyler was an amazing man, husband, father, and firefighter who will be deeply missed by many.”
Rico leaves behind a wife and six children.
Nicole Breaux, president of the North Whidbey Fire and Rescue Firefighter Association, started a GoFundMe campaign called “Helping Tyler Rico’s Family” and it has raised $10,450 as of Thursday morning. Those wishing to donate can find the GoFundMe at the following link: bit.ly/3t7SPJa.
“(Tyler) loved his family, fire department and community,” Breaux said. “He took pride in his service and he made a difference. Saying goodbye isn’t for us. Instead we will stand the watch, we will treasure our memories and love for our fallen brother until we see him again.”
A funeral service will be held on Sunday, Sept. 5 at Oak Harbor High School. The fire department procession from Wallin-Stucky Funeral Home to the high school will begin at 9:15 a.m. and public visitation will occur from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. The funeral will begin at 1 p.m.