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Newsworthy Wrap-Up: Friday 12/30/11

MASSACHUSETTS – It was a sad day in Peabody Friday where firefighters from across North America came to pay their respects to Peabody Firefighter James Rice who died a week ago battling a blaze two days before Christmas.

The funeral procession took place in front of St. John the Baptist Church, including a State Police motorcycle detail followed by two Peabody fire department trucks. The Ladder 1 truck carried flowers while the Engine 5 truck carried the body and casket of Rice. Governor Deval Patrick, Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray, and state Fire Marshall Stephen D. Coan also took part in the procession.

His funeral marked the second time firefighters from across the region flooded the state in honor of a fallen hero. Jon D. Davies Sr., a 17-year veteran of the Worcester Fire Department, died in the collapse of a burning three-decker earlier in December. His funeral was held on December 15.

Rice was killed December 23 while battling a three-alarm blaze in an apartment building on Hancock Street. He became trapped, and crews had to find and carry Rice out of the building.

An estimated 700 mourners gathered.

All Photos Courtesy of the Peabody Police Department

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