Family, friends, fellow firefighters and Rangers gathered to
share stories and pay tribute to Savannah Fire and Emergency Services Battalion
Chief Forrest "Tod" Heil.
It was an emotional memorial service in celebration of Heil's
life held at the Wilmington Island Club.
One my one, family members, rangers and fellow firefighters
spoke of the extraordinary deeds and legacy Heil left behind.
On Friday, with friends and family by his side, Heil passed
away after a long and hard fought battled with brain cancer.
"Tod has set a legacy that will never be repeated at
Savannah Fire," said Battalion Chief Kenny Rentiers. "Tod's commitment, there are
three words that come to mind when it comes to Tod. They are honor, courage and
Hearing how her father impacted so many was somewhat
overwhelming for the family, but it showed how true his spirit was.
"It was heartbreaking and inspiring at the same time because
you knew he had such an impact on so many people, and it is heartbreaking he is
no longer here," said McKinley Heil, Tod's 14-year-old daughter.
She shared her final letter to her father during an
emotional memorial ceremony.
"Dad, I am lying her in realization that you are no longer
here," she read. "That you won't be able to get dressed up for prom or help me
through a broken heart."
Tod Heil was known as a family man, but he was just as
dedicated to his family at Savannah Fire and the 175th Ranger
Battalion in Savannah.
"He has left a lasting impact, and I think the entire fire
department will be sad he is gone," said McKinley Heil.
In memory of Tod Heil, Savannah Fire held a ringing of the
bell ceremony and the Rangers held a 21 gun salute to show the honor and
respect they have for a man who committed his life to serving.
Tod Heil is survived by his wife Leigh and three children,
Parker, McKinley and Jake.