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Local theater helps firefighting community grieve their fallen brother

Mineral Point community pays tribute to Cpt. Brian Busch
There were so many first responders at the ceremony that they could not fit everyone inside the church.
Published: Jan. 14, 2022 at 5:00 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 14, 2022 at 6:34 PM CST
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MINERAL POINT, Wis. (WMTV) - The Mineral Point Opera House hosted a livestream of the funeral ceremony for Fire Capt. Brian Busch, who was killed in a crash while responding to a scene, to allow Wisconsin firefighters visiting from out of town to view the services.

“It reaches further and it hits harder,” Dane County Fire Chiefs President Joe Pulvermacher said when describing the pain for firefighters who did not know Cpt. Busch personally. “All we can do is try to put ourselves in their shoes and it’s not a great feeling knowing this could happen to anyone who’s representing their departments here today.”

There were so many first responders at the ceremony that they could not fit everyone inside the church. Mineral Point’s mayor asked the opera house if they could host a livestream the ceremony for other firefighters to watch together.

Theater Manager Christina Harrington said it was an easy answer -- yes.

”It’s not just a space for entertainment but could be a resource for the community or could be used for a lot of different purposes… Happy or sad,” Harrington said. “The whole community has been really supportive throughout all of this. I think being a smaller town I think everybody took it very personally and felt it. Even if they didn’t know the two firemen personally.”

“We look at one aspect of his life that ultimately was the end of his life but so much more that contributed to the things that he brought to the table,” Chief Pulvermacher said. “And you see that not only through his obituary but through the people who have spoken on his behalf.”

Pulvermacher did not know Cpt. Busch personally but learned that his son plans to follow in his late father’s footsteps and become a firefighter.

Mineral Point Fire Chief Bryan Marr released a statement following the conclusion of the funeral services for both firefighters killed in the crash. Jim Ludlum was laid to rest Wednesday.

The Mineral Point Fire Department would like to convey a heartfelt thank you to all individuals and agencies who have expressed their condolences to the families of Firefighter Jim Ludlum, Fire Captain Brian Busch and the members of the Mineral Point Fire Department. The words and actions of so many people have truly helped to lift our spirits in this time of loss. To all of the agencies that have provided coverage for us and our partner, the Mineral Point Rescue Squad, there are no words to adequately express the appreciation we have for your gift of time and brotherhood. To all the agencies who provided parking assistance, traffic control or security, thank you.

We want to give special thanks to the Wisconsin State Honor Guard, Fitchburg Fire Chief Joe Pulvermacher, and Fitchburg Deputy Fire Chief Chad Grossen for all of the planning and work put into making the visitations and funerals memorable and beautiful.

Although January 6 will always be the day we remember as the day of the tragic crash, the week that followed will always be with us because of the generosity, brotherhood, and selflessness we have experienced and for the incredible friendships we have made.

The Mineral Point Fire Department is surrounded by a kind and caring community. The outpouring of support has been tremendous. We will continue to provide service to the Mineral Point area as we always have. Brian and Jim will be watching over us on each and every call and they would want the department to do what we have always done, protect our community.

In regard to the crash investigation, the Iowa County Sheriff’s Office and Wisconsin State Patrol are still investigating and any statement(s) regarding that investigation will come through those two agencies.

Mineral Point Fire Chief Bryan Marr

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