The Vista Fire Department and loved ones are mourning the loss of one of their own – a beloved firefighter who died after a battle with cancer.
Andy Valenta was diagnosed with stage four melanoma, a type of skin cancer, in January, the Vista Firefighters Association said in a statement on Sunday. A GoFundMe page set up to support his family stated that the illness had “spread into many organs” and left Valenta in the ICU.
Remembered as a “boisterous” firefighter with an “infectious smile, positivity and compassion,” Valenta leaves behind his wife and two young daughters who are 4 and 2 years old.
“The loss of Andy has left a gaping hole in the fire community and although time may heal, his lasting impact and memory will never leave us,” the Vista Firefighters Association said in a somber post.