A York County firefighter will be remembered during a service for fallen firefighters this weekend.

Christian Beaston Jr., who was a member of the Wrightsville and Hellam fire departments, died on Dec. 7, 2011.

His death came less than a day after responding to the scene of a crash. Beaston was 52.

"It was an unfortunate incident," said Fred Smetzler, chief of Wrightsville Fire Co. "I think it took a huge toll on his family."

Beaston is among the 80 firefighters who died in 2011 and five firefighters who died in previous years who will be remembered at the 31st Annual National Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Md., at 10 a.m. on Sunday.

The service is open to the public.

Ceremony: According to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, more than 6,000 people are

expected to attend the service.

Families will receive flags flown over the U.S. Capitol and the National Memorial. Members of the fire service, honor guard units and pipe and drum units from across the county will take part.

Beaston will be the second York County firefighter to be honored at the ceremony as many years.

Last year, Douglas Farrington, president of the Delta-Cardiff Volunteer Fire Co., was honored after he died from a heart attack in 2010, less than a day after responding to a barn fire. Farrington was 44.


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Committed: Beaston, who was a fire police officer with Hellam Township and a firefighter and fire police officer with Wrightsville, was the kind of volunteer who went to all of the incidents despite the thankless job he performed, said Hellam Fire Chief Matt Dube.

"(It's) a job nobody wants to do because you're out in all kinds of weather," Dube said of the fire police officer post.

According to his obituary, Beaston was also a member of the Pennsylvania Fire Police Association and had served in the Army National Guard.

He served with Hellam Fire Co. for a few years and with Wrightsville at least 10 years.

In that time, he was a committed to both departments, Smeltzer said.

"He was one of the guys who was at all the incidents and activities at both departments," Smeltzer said.

-- Reach Greg Gross at ggross@yorkdispatch.com.