The Nolensville Volunteer Fire Department celebrated the life and legacy of one of their founding members on Friday as it led the funeral procession for Harold M. Shafer from Jenkins Cumberland Presbyterian Church to the Nolensville Cemetery.
Shafer, 88, died on Saturday, July 11, after serving more than 30 years with the NVFD where he rose to the rank of Chief Engineer in addition to serving the Nolensville community in other ways including as Mason at Nolensville Mill Creek Lodge #775 and as a member of the Nolensville Lions Club.
Former NVFD Chief Presley Hughes said in a phone call that Shafer moved to Nolensville from Michigan in 1979, where he also served as a firefighter.
Hughes said that Shafer quickly became a valuable asset to the department where he stood out as both a mechanic and as a training instructor for driving the engine. He, to Hughes, was someone who helped to improve the department and the community through service.
"His devotion to serve and just help his community was outstanding," Hughes said.
NVFD Chief Adam Spencer said in a phone call that they were able to honor Shafer's service by taking part in the funeral procession along with support by Arrington Volunteer Fire Department, as well as help Brentwood Fire and Rescue who covered calls in Nolensville during the service so that NVFD firefighters could pay their respects.
"Honoring the traditions of those who came before us is one of the most important things that we can do in the fire service," Spencer said.
"So doing this little bit for him and honoring him at his funeral is the least members of our department could have done because he laid the foundation for the fire department along with people like Chief Hughes, and he made the Nolensville Volunteer Fire Department what it is today."
In addition Spencer said that a bagpiper from Nashville Fire Pipes and Drums performed "Amazing Grace" during the funeral service and the Murfreesboro Fire Department Honor Guard also attended the graveside service.