Manitou Fire Dept. firefighter dies after hit by vehicle

Manitou Fire Dept. firefighter dies after hit by vehicle
Published: Nov. 21, 2023 at 9:42 AM CST
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HOPKINS CO., Ky. (WFIE) - The Maintou Fire Department has announced that one of their own has been killed in an accident.

Chief Michael Walker says firefighter David Berry was killed after he was hit by a car while walking on Manitou Road. It was just hundreds of feet from the fire station.

According to a release, that happened Monday evening.

Officials say the driver of the vehicle told them it was dark and rainy. By the time the driver spotted Berry, they did not have enough time to avoid the crash.

The Hopkins County Coroner’s Office pronounced Berry dead at the scene.

Chief Walker says it’s been a hard 24 hours for him and the department.

“I don’t really know how to explain how I feel,” Walker said. “It’s like I’m more in shock than anything. Just him not being here is just going to be a complete loss. He brought a lot to the fire department, everybody loved David.”

Walker doesn’t know where Berry was heading when he was hit. With the fire station being so close, Walker was one of the first ones there.

“When I arrived on scene I did not realize it was David at first but once I found out, I don’t know if I would put it as I lost it but it really hit me hard,” Walker said. “I had a couple other firefighters from other departments on scene with me who were there for me and calmed me down.”

Berry was a husband, father and grandfather. His coworkers say he loved to joke around and brought a positive spirit to the station.

They say he also loved to fix up cars and the fire trucks. The side of engine 902 currently honors Norwood Mangum, who donated the land for the fire station. Chief Walker says they plan to change that on this truck.

“This was one of his favorite trucks,” said Walker. “It’s quite possible that’s gonna be replaced with David because Norwood is on the other trucks.”

Following Berry’s death, Nebo and Hanson fire departments took care of Manitou’s runs, giving them at least a little time to grieve.