Former firefighter recognized at festival Saturday

MISHAWAKA, Ind. (WNDU) - On Saturday, the Firefighters Blues Festival paid tribute to former South Bend Firefighter, Josh Comeau.

Comeau’s family accepted a golden ax from the South Bend Fire Department, symbolizing his dedication to the department and community.

“Thank you all for just giving us this moment to be able to stand here and share our journey with you,” said widow, Rosary Comeau.

Comeau was first diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer in 2014. He beat it once, but then it came back. Comeau died this past January.

“Sometimes there are still moments where it just gets hard for everybody and we all just have our meltdowns,” said daughter, Ellie Comeau.

“But I would say the best way to put it...we are struggling well through it. I didn’t know grief was an all-consuming life event,” Rosary said.

“People have been helping us lately so that’s been a big joy,” said daughter, Mia Comeau.

“These guys and these women on this department are there for us every step of the way,” Rosary said.

Mia said she misses watching her dad on the guitar.

“It’s been really hard because I haven’t heard it a lot and I’ve been used to that,” Mia said.

“I think the thing I miss the most is just the light-heartedness and the fun spirit that he brought to our home every day,” Rosary said.

People have said Comeau lit up a room with his contagious presence and love for God.

His daughter said they are living in hope, and encourages you to as well.

“That you’re going to see them again. It might be a while, but it’s going to happen, and so there’s nothing to be worried about,” Elli said.