Elvis Reyes, longtime city firefighter, remembered for love of his family and love for the community
A well-known, and well-liked Rochester city firefighter was laid to rest on Wednesday. Elvis Reyes died last week at the age of 54, apparently due to complications from surgery.
Reyes had recently marked 20 years of service in the fire department, working out of the firehouse in Charlotte.
The funeral at the Blue Cross Arena for Reyes was certainly respectful, and solemn at times, but it was also filled with stories from those who worked with him in the fire department and members of his family who remembered a gregarious, dedicated man who loved his family and his city.
The eulogies included a tribute from Remington Reyes, one of the sons of Elvis Reyes who followed in his father’s footsteps and joined the city fire department.
He said that his father loved the job of being a firefighter and also loved being part of his community.
“Whether that was coaching basketball, I remember going to those games growing up. He was always smiling ear to ear,” remembered Reyes. “Taking the firetruck to Camp Heroes to put the kids in the bucket truck and bringing them up. The kids were always smiling ear to ear even if they’re scared to go in. they always had a great time after.”
Remington Reyes said that, “Dad was not only the glue of the family, but he was duct tape wrapped around it 21 times. He held us all together. I know that even now because of this our family is even closer than ever. My dad’s love for his family was only matched by his love for his community.”
Also attending the service, one of Reyes’s cousins, Dominique Perez, said that she was touched by seeing the outpouring of love and respect shown for Elvis Reyes.
“Being here today and seeing the love, it’s easy with the love of our family to see how much he meant. But to see the love of the community and how many people he has touched, it’s a beautiful turnout,” said Perez.
Parts of downtown Rochester were closed off to traffic on Wednesday due to the funeral procession which saw hundreds of firefighters, police and other first responders marching near the Blue Cross Arena.
Elvis Reyes had recently marked 20 years of service in the fire department, working out of the firehouse in Charlotte.