“Dad was a family man,” said Samantha Messer, of the late Dennis Dozier, a 33-year veteran firefighter with the Barbourville Fire Department.
“Family came first, that’s what he was built on, she said. “He was always so outgoing, he loved to travel and take us on vacations.”
Firefighting runs in the Dozier family. Dennis Dozier served alongside his older brother, Doug, the current Fire Chief of Barbourville Fire Department, several nephews, a brother-in-law and two great nephews.
“Sometimes I would go with daddy to a fire,” recalls Messer. “I would have to sit in the truck, but he would let me go. It was exciting. Firefighting was a big part of my childhood.”
Fellow firefighter Alva Patterson served with Dozier for 28 years. He says Dozier was a “sports enthusiast.” Dozier played softball for many years, coached little league and refereed basketball.
“I remember we went to 13 NASCAR races in one summer,” Patterson said, “We always went to Daytona, Bristol and Talladega at least.”
Patterson says it was Dozier’s concern for others that drove him to be a firefighter.
Denny Dozier received full department honors including his “ Last Call” from Dispatch as he was laid to rest Saturday, July 18, at the Barbourville Cemetery.