CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Chicago Fire Department paid solemn tribute to fallen officer Juan Bucio in two special ceremonies Tuesday.
Bucio died on Memorial Day while searching for a man who fell off a boat on the Chicago River. The Cook County Medical Examiner's Office determined that Bucio, 46, died of a rare heart condition called lymphocytic myocarditis that can cause heart failure. His death was also ruled accidental.
Bucio's two sons, Joshua and Jacob, were on hand at the Robert J. Quinn Fire Academy in the South Loop, to retire Bucio's badge, No. 5115, to the Wall of Honor, which honors firefighters who have died in the line of duty.
Bucio's siblings, brother Isaac and sister Maria, said ceremonies like this help keep fallen firefighters' memories alive.
"It means my brother will live on," Maria said.
"My brother paid the ultimate price for this city and he will be remembered and nobody will forget that," he said. "That's the reason why we do stuff like this."
Mayor Rahm Emanuel agreed, calling Bucio a hero.
"Chicago will never forget Juan Bucio's countless acts of selflessness, his commitment to serving others and his heroic sacrifice on behalf of our city," Emanuel said.
Fire Commissioner Santiago said the city and fire department are better because of Bucio.
"To Josh and Jake, my prayer is one day you'll have your own children and you will come to this place and see that your father was a hero and most precious son of Chicago," he said. "I hope and pray that badge 5115 provides a sense of pride to Joshua and Jacob in all the days to follow."
Bucio's sons, brother and sister Maria also laid a brick with Juan's name on it at the Chicago Fire Department's Firefighter/Paramedic Memorial Park, right along the lakefront with the helicopter that Bucio deployed from that fateful day flying above.
"This was his home. This is where he is most comfortable. So to be here for this, it's an honor for us," said Ron Dorneker, Deputy District Chief of CFD Marine & Dive Operations.
Bucio was a 15-year veteran of the Chicago Fire Department, spending the last 11 years on the Marine and Dive Operations Unit. Prior to CFD, Bucio was a Chicago police officer from 2000-2003, a police spokesman confirmed.
Isaac Bucio said the ceremonies represent a brotherhood that honors the fallen to the full extent.
"I was just commenting to (my sister) how many people I know on those bricks and I think it goes to show they'll never be forgotten, they'll always be remembered," he said.
Fallen CFD diver Juan Bucio's badge added to wall of honor
More TOP STORIES News