BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Around 200 firefighters from Erie County filled into buses Saturday morning and made their way to the Rochester area to attend the wake of two fallen firefighters.
It was on Christmas Eve when Webster firefighters headed to a burning house fire.
Police say it was a trap started by 62-year-old, WIlliam Spengler. Authorities believe he started a car and a house on fire to lure in, then shoot at and kill firefighters. Lt. Michael Chiapperini, and firefighter Tomasz Kaczowka were both killed. Two others were injured.
Local firefighters were definitely stunned by the shootings.
DeSoto Fire Chief, Alan Wieberg says, "Words can't even explain because this could have been any one of us. It doesn't matter if you're paid or a volunteer; this is something you can't plan for. Seeing how it can affect a volunteer fire department and knowing that it could be your department, it really hits home."
It's that reason firefighters say they need to attend the wake. They say if something were to happen to them, they would want their firefighters there as well.
Deputy Fire Coordinator in the County of Erie Department of Emergency Services, Tiger Schmittendorf says, "Firefighters rush into burning buildings under the assumption that we're welcome there to help folks, to save lives, and protect their property. It's very difficult to think that someone would want to assault us or kill us while we're doing that job."
He says it's the brotherhood of the fire service and what keeps them together during difficult times such as this.
Many firefighters are saying the worst of it, is that it could have been anyone of them.
At least four fire companies responded to a large house fire in Blasdell.
Buffalo Police have arrested 26-year-old Nicholas Finnegan of South Buffalo and charged him with pushing Russ Ross to his death.
The Niagara County Sheriff's is on the scene of a suspected meth lab in Cambria.
Police say there were 32 burglaries, 20 in Albion, five in Medina, four in Oakfield and three in the City of Lockport.
Berry admitted filing 122 false federal income tax returns for people who had died. He must pay restitution for the stolen money.
Six-year-old Nya Ricks was chosen to light Roswell Park Cancer Institute's Tree of Hope Friday night.