LEAGUE CITY, Texas - A 62-year-old fire cadet who collapsed and died during training was laid to rest on Tuesday.
League City officials said Donald Mize, 62, had participated in a training exercise at the city's training facility in the 700 block of North Kansas Avenue shortly before he collapsed on March 6.
"They said he wasn't complaining of any problems, that they had been working and he sat down to rest a minute and his heart just stopped," Mize's wife, Theresa, said.
Mize was taken to Clear Lake Regional Medical Center, where he died.
Mize passed a full physical and showed no problems before he was accepted into the fire academy, officials said.
Dozens of people lined the streets Tuesday outside League City Fire Station No. 2, where Mize would have worked.
"It's very moving when you realize that being part of a fire department is more than just a calling and something to do. It's a brotherhood," said Heather , whose husband is lieutenant who has been with League City's fire department for five years. "Some people might wonder, with him being so new, whether he was truly a firefighter or part of the family. But I think they know -- just look around."
More than 200 uniformed personnel formed an honor wall, a fire service tradition, to honor Mize outside St. Mary's Catholic Church.
"When I heard how old he was, I just pictured this man who, as a child, wanted to be a firefighter and he was finally getting to live that dream," said.
The fire department had a name plate made for Mize to honor his dedication. He was also a retired teacher.
Mize was a graduate of the Citizen's Police Academy and a member of the Texas State Guard.
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