Fallen firefighter memorial unveiled in Laurel County

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LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT/WYMT) - The names of the two firefighters who died in the line of duty in Laurel County are emblazoned on the national and state Fallen Firefighter’s Memorial.

Until Saturday the only memorials dedicated in their memory were in Frankfort and Maryland.

During a special ceremony in London Saturday morning, a memorial to the fallen firefighters was brought much closer to home.

"I have memories every day. I'll never forget him,” said Irene Vaughn, the widow of firefighter Basil Vaughn.

She says she had been married to him for 15 years when he was killed in 1987.

"He was overcome by smoke inhalation, he died instantly. He was fighting fire, trying to keep it out of the church," she said.

Then a month later, another tragedy struck Laurel County. Firefighter Kenny Hollon was killed on his 23rd birthday.

"He was in a motor vehicle accident while he was responding to a structure fire," said Laurel County Fire Department Alliance spokeswoman Melva Pearce.

The names of the two men, immortalized in the hearts of many in Laurel County are now immortalized on the memorial standing near the intersection of Highways 229 and 192.

"It's been almost 27 years but people still remember so that means a lot to me, that people care that much about him," Vaughn said.

Family members of the former Keavy fire chief were also honored during Saturday’s ceremony because he made it possible to create the Laurel County memorial.

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