The Fridley community and fire department, along with family and friends, will pay last respects to Scott Allard on Monday, following his death on April 10.
The longtime Fridley resident and veteran Fridley firefighter was recovering from injuries from a March 31 motorcycle crash at the time of his death.
Protocol for Honors
Scott Allard's memorial will include honors in keeping with protocol for firefighters who die while on active duty.
Firefighters across the state are invited to the memorial on Monday. From 8 a.m. Monday to 8 a.m. Tuesday, neighboring mutual-aid fire departments will take over all duties of the Fridley Fire Department.
Fridley firefighters will provide an honor guard Monday through the visitation, including accompanying Allard's body from the Miller Funeral Home across the street to St. Philip's. Other departments will take over the official fire presence for the funeral, allowing members of the Fridley department to attend as individuals.
The memorial service will include several elements special to a firefighter funeral, Berg said, including the bell ceremony, presentation of the flag and the eulogy. He also said he expected bagpipes to play.
The Fridley Fire Department has also honored retired firefighters at the times of their deaths, but no Fridley firefighter has died in the line of duty, according to Fire Chief John Berg. He said there has no other active-duty Fridley firefighter has died since he joined the department in 1987.
A Fire Chiefs Assistance and Support Team (FAST) from the Minnesota Fire Chiefs Association provided help to the Fridley Fire Department last week, including assistance with planning for the funeral according to protocol in the case of an active-duty firefighter death.
A Dedicated Firefighter
Allard, a paid-on-call firefighter, joined the Fridley Fire Department in 1994, said Fire Chief John Berg, and was a very active member of the department. "He was here [at Fire Station No. 1] a lot," Berg said.
Allard coordinated testing for new firefighters, according to Berg, and served as a field training officer to orient new firefighters to Fridley and give them in-house training.
Allard served as president of the Fridley Volunteer Firefighters Relief Association—"He was a big advocate for firefighter rights and benefits," Berg said.
The Fridley Fire Department began covering medical calls the same year Allard joined the department, Berg said. Over the years, Allard worked to improve the department's emergency medical services (EMS) capabilities—from training to equipment.
"Today we're all EMTs (emergency medical technicians)," Berg said. "That was one of Scott's big pushes."
A Love of Motorcycling
Allard "always owned a motorcycle," Berg said—Harley-Davidsons. "He liked to ride. He'd ride a lot alone."
Allard was on his bike when he was involved in a crash in Fridley on March 31 at about 3 p.m. According to the police report, Allard was attempting to cross Highway 65 westbound at Fireside Drive NE when his motorcycle hit a northbound van. Several witnesses said Allard's view of the van may have been blocked by a vehicle turning right onto Fireside Drive, the report said; both drivers had valid driver's licenses and no citations were issued. Allard was treated at the scene for injuries to his head and face and left ankle, and transported to Unity Hospital; he was not wearing a helmet.
Allard was recovering from his injuries at Hennepin County Medical Center when he died Tuesday, Berg said.
On the Fridley Fire Department Facebook page, this message was posted:
"It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Firefighter and Brother Scott Allard. Scott joined the Fridley Fire Department in November 1994 and served proudly for eighteen years. He served with his son Matt for the past six years. Scott passed suddenly and unexpectedly today, April 10, at Hennepin County Medical Center. Scott was recovering from injuries he sustained in a motorcycle accident on March 31st. Our thoughts and prayers are with Scott’s family and friends."
Allard's father, Ronald Allard, who died last year, was a Fridley police officer. His son, Matt, is a member of the Fridley Fire Department. Allard's wife, Karen, and daughters Tawny and Nicole, are active with the Fridley Flames auxiliary organization.
"The Allards have been in the community, serving the community, and they will continue to do that," Berg said.