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"The Ultimate Sacrifice"  
National EMS Memorial Service

National EMS Memorial Service Honoree

NEMSMS Honoree Bryan C. Pottberg

Lee's Summit Fire Department
Lee's Summit, Missouri

"He had a positive personality and got along with everyone. He never said a negative word about anyone." If you had Bryan on the scene, you knew he could do what needed to be done," stated Assistant Fire Chief John VanGorkom.

Bryan Pottberg, 25, of Lee's Summit, Missouri had been on a diving exercise the day he lost his life. The squad was on location at Lakewood Lake performing their diving drill when it was Bryan's turn to dive into the water. Everything about the dive looked normal, however when he did not signal for the next diver to descend, there was an immediate search. He was pulled unconscious from the water and cardio-pulmonary resuscitation efforts were made in an attempt to revive Bryan. He was taken to Lee's Summit Hospital then rushed by Lifeflight helicopter to Research Medical Center. All attempts failed and Bryan was pronounced dead from aphyxiation.

Mr. Pottberg was a four-year veteran for the Lee's Summit Fire Department. He worked as a firefighter and a paramedic. He was a certified diver with the department's water rescue and recovery team. Brian also served as an adjunct Emergency Medical Service instructor for area training programs.

"He was just a pleasure to work with. He never had a bad day," said Gary Trigg, his shift commander. "He always wanted to play the bagpipes," Trigg added, noting that Pottberg had been taking lessons for about a year and was preparing to buy a set. Bryan came from a family of firefighters, and he had set a life goal to become a member of the Lee's Summit Fire Department. In high school he kept a scanner in his room so he could hear all calls that came in. His purpose was to be the best firefighter, the best paramedic, the best at water rescue, and the best lifesaver that he could aspire to achieve.

His parents Robert and Linda Pottberg, and one brother Steve Pottberg, survive Bryan Pottberg.

Honored 2001