Jones addresses firefighters, community after Hinkie’s death

By Dannie Oliveaux |

Silsbee Volunteer Fire Department Chief Robin Jones addressed a large gathering at headquarters which include volunteer firemen from Lumberton, Kountze, Saratoga, Votaw-Ticket, Spurger, Fred and other local fire departments on Aug. 3, after the tragic death of long-time volunteer firefighter and assistant chief Jay Hinkie.

Hinkie died Aug. 2 after being struck while working the scene of an accident on FM 418.

Jones thanked local patrons and fellow volunteer firefighters for their support.

“I really appreciate the fire departments that have pack into this station and took over,” he said. “As of 12 p.m. today (Thurday), the Silsbee Volunteer Fire Department has resumed command of this station and manning the trucks.”

Jones also asked the group to remember the good times and celebrate the life that Hinkie gave.

“His was the ultimate sacrifice,” he said.

He announced that Hinkie will have the “full fireman’s funeral” and his casket will be closed.

The viewing is 2-7 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 5 at Broussard’s Funeral Home, 490 Cemetery Rd. Services are set for 2 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6 at the Silsbee High School football field.

“We needed a large place because Jay had a lot of friends,” Jones stated. “There are a lot of people who love him.”

Jones said in the case of rain, he has a three-hour window to look at.

“If it looks like rain, we are going to move it into the high school auditorium and gym,” he explained. “We got some guys working with a company to put big screen TV in the gym if that is what it calls for.”

Jones said there will be honor guards which include two firefighters in dress uniform with one person at each end of the casket from 8 a.m. Saturday and will end after the final burial Sunday afternoon.

“We are not going to leave him alone,” Jones added. “We will be with him.”

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to the Silsbee Volunteer Fire Department, 490 Payne Rd., Silsbee, TX 77656.

“I truly thank everyone for coming today and showing your support in helping support the family and us through this,” said Jones. “Jay had been a full-fledge fireman for 26 years. He has belonged to this family of firefighters, with is a large, worldwide family and we all stand together.”

Jones said the flags in the city were at half staff in honor of Hinkie, along with flags at Exxon-Mobile and the state capitol.

“Throughout the state, they are honoring him.” he added.

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