Candlelight vigil held for fallen firefighter

Posted at: 09/08/2013 10:11 PM
Updated at: 09/09/2013 7:35 AM
By: Maria Guerrero, KOB Eyewitness News 4

JEMEZ SPRINGS -- Around 200 people gathered at Jemez Springs Park on Sunday evening to remember Token Adams.

The wildland firefighter went missing after being dispatched to locate a smoke reported on Friday, August 30, in the Jemez Mountain.

His body was discovered one week later. Fire officials say Adams died after crashing his ATV.

Residents and fellow firefighters like Jeffrey Dube attended a candlelight vigil.

Dube was in the lookout tower. He said when he lost communication with Adams on Friday afternoon, he knew something was wrong.

Dube said Adams was "religious" about communicating.

"It was really, really hard because we all love Token, just a great guy, hell of a firefighter and he was good to all of his people." he said.

Adams is also being remembered as a devoted husband and father.

His wife, Heidi, is not ready to talk, but is grateful for the outpouring of support.

The couple has a 3-year-old son and is expecting their second child.

"There's been national outpouring of support of Token's family and the community as well, so it's been a ripple effect throughout the country," said Brad Pitassi of the Southwest Area Incident Management.

Several area churches organized the candlelight vigil in honor of the 41-year-old U.S. Navy veteran and Jemez Ranger District Engine Captain.

David Whiteley of the Jemez Springs Community Presbyterian Church said his message is that "even in the valley of the shadow of death, God is with us, and that the community is supporting his family and being there for them."

Finding Adams a week after he disappeared provided some closure so that the grieving process can begin.

"There will be points where we'll break down once in a while, that's bound to happen. I'm going to miss him greatly. We used to give each other lots of crap every morning when we'd check in," Dube said. "He was great with that!"

The investigation into Adams' death continues.

Something left to be determined is if he died instantly in the crash or if he survived a couple of days.