West says goodbye to firefighter brothers



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Posted on April 29, 2013 at 4:22 PM

Updated Monday, Apr 29 at 5:29 PM

WEST, Texas  –– Two brothers were remembered fondly Monday at a private service in the town they helped protect for so long.

Bob Snokhous, 48, and  his brother Doug, 50, were some of the first firefighters to respond when the West Fertilizer Co. went up in flames on April 17.

Moments after arriving, the plant exploded. Both men died.

"You just can't imagine the devastation; I've got a brother," said Bob Chaffee, a former firefighter from Houston who drove up with his wife to pay his respects.

"Both my brother and I were firefighters," Chaffee said. "This is the type of thing you always fear."

Both Snokhous men were married with growing families.  

Fire trucks and emergency cars from across the state lined Harrison Street in front of St. Mary's Catholic Church as a tribute.

A Doug Snokhous Memorial Fund has been set up at State National Bank of West. Folks can also make donations for either brother at the West Volunteer Fire Department.

Fifteen people died in the plant explosion, including 12 first responders. They were memorialized in Waco last Thursday. President Barack Obama, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn and Texas Gov. Rick Perry were among the speakers. 

More services are scheduled for later this week. 

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