Photo credit: Family Photo via Newcastle News Letter Journal, Wyoming
NEWCASTLE, Wyo. (AP) -- Nearly a third of this town of 3,000 turned out for the funeral of volunteer firefighter Anndee Huber, a bubbly and ambitious 16-year-old girl whose death in a firetruck rollover did more than break hearts.
The crash angered townspeople and cast a spotlight on drinking in the many small-town firehouses across America that often double as social clubs.
After Anndee's death, the firefighter at the wheel, Ronald Caillier, was charged with drunken driving, and it was learned that the fire hall had a bar.
And not only that, but Caillier had a drunken driving conviction from a year ago. And just a week and a half before the wreck that killed Anndee, he had gotten out of jail on another drinking-related offense.
``It put the whole community in shock,'' said Mayor Ed Wagoner, himself a volunteer firefighter in this town at the western edge of the Black Hills. ``Losing one of our own, and then finding out the charges being filed, there was a lot of anger I had to deal with personally.''