BLACKSBURG, Va. –
Nearly 200 people gathered in Blacksburg Monday to pay respects to a fallen hero.
Dozens of family and friends celebrated the life of Michael Linkous, a son, uncle and firefighter who devoted his life to helping the community. Linkous was the assistant chief of the Blacksburg Volunteer Fire Department.
Linkous grew up in Blacksburg and joined the department as a teenager in 1983 following in his father's footsteps.
After years of battling fires, Linkous lost his battle with cancer on Friday.
On Monday, a funeral was held at McCoy Funeral Home in Blacksburg. Men and women in uniform lined the pews, including Linkous' cousin, Capt. John Cromer. The two grew up at the firehouse answering calls together.
"We developed a very strong brotherhood, a bond," Cromer said. "He knew I had his back."
Linkous was described as a loving and selfless leader who answered his last call after 36 years of service.
Instead of flowers, the family is asking for donations to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation.