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Funeral held for fallen Ponca Hills Fire Department firefighter

Posted at 3:23 PM, Mar 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-16 13:20:19-04

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) - A funeral mass was held for Ponca Hills volunteer firefighter Dennis Bender who died in the line of duty last week.

Bender passed away after collapsing from a medical emergency while responding to brush fires in the Fort Calhoun area.

The mass was held at St. John the Baptist at 215 North 13th Street in Fort Calhoun.

A funeral procession will leave St. John the Baptist around 12:30 before heading to Forest Lawn Cemetery for burial.

The procession route will be:

  • South on US 75 to Ponca Road.
  • East on Ponca Road to JJ Pershing Drive.
  • South on Pershing drive to Diagonal Road.
  • West on Diagonal Road to McKinley Road.
  • West on McKinley to Mormon Bridge Road, then south to Forest Lawn Cemetery.

Those who wish to pay tribute to Bender can line up along the procession route as long as it can be done safely. Firefighters urge people not to park along the sides of state highways.

Memorials can be sent to the Ponca Hills Fire Department Ambulance Fund.

Bender began his service as a volunteer firefighter in 1971. In 1977, he graduated from the Creighton University Paramedic training class #2.

He passed on the anniversary of his wife's death.

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