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34 year old firefighter Damien Smith from Tonbridge died in Golden Green on Monday 3 May when he collided with a van.
Damien's mother sally has written this tribute:
“Our Lovely Boy isn’t here today.
His name is Damien Smith our world has ended, he was only 34 years old.
He was one of the most kind, loving, genuine people that you would ever meet.
We knew that he was popular but we cannot believe how many people loved him.
He was a retained fireman for many years and in his younger days he went to Tonbridge Boys Brigade.
We have worked together in our family business for the last 18 years with Damien being the manager for the past 5 years. He is going to be sorely missed by all.
He is going to become a dad in 10 weeks time and was so excited with the prospect of this as he loved children and had so much love to give; he would have mad a fantastic dad.
Only 3 days before this tragedy happened he returned from his last “child-free holiday” with his partner Jennie, and now our grandchild will have to grow up never knowing his dad.
This tragedy happened at 8.15pm on the 3 May at Three Elm Lane when he collided with a van. I’m his mum and am not strong enough to start any campaigns but I strongly believe that if my son had not been on a motorbike he would still be here today, there is just too much traffic on the roads now.
Damien leaves behind his parents Neville and Sally; brother and sister Wayne and Becky; partner Jennie and their unborn child; stepbrother Robert ; eight week old nephew Zachary and so, so many friends and family.”
A celebration of Damien’s life will be held on Wednesday 19 May, 11.30am at Tonbridge Baptist Church, Darenth Avenue, Tonbridge, followed by a committal at Tunbridge Wells Crematorium at 2pm. The family request no flowers but donations to ‘Fire-fighters Charity’ and they would like mourners to wear smart, casual and colourful clothing.
Kent Fire and Rescue say they're mourning the loss of their colleague.
Damien served with Tonbridge fire station for 12 years.
Tonbridge Station Manager Paul Ramsden said on behalf of his colleagues: "Damien was really the life and soul of the station – he loved to laugh and joke, and clearly relished the job. He was a hard working and professional firefighter that maintained the highest standards and his contribution to the fire service and local community has been outstanding. Juggling his position at the station with a full time employment meant that he dedicated a large proportion of his spare time to being a firefighter."