Scott Danielson, a New Jersey emergency services worker, was laid to rest on Jan. 12, leaving behind a wife and three children. He also leaves behind a legacy of generosity that will be remembered for generations to come.
As hundreds of citizens mourn the sudden loss, they look to Danielson’s life as the ultimate example of leadership.
Captain Danielson was just 49 years old when he suffered a massive heart attack, just hours after responding to a car accident that involved his 19-year-old daughter, Alycia. Danielson, a volunteer with the Lakeland Emergency Squad for 35 years, was off-duty at a diner when he rushed to the accident scene to check on his daughter.
Danielson arrived at the scene and helped treat his daughter and another occupant for minor injuries. He then drove to the hospital to wait for his daughter’s release when he suffered a sudden heart attack in the waiting room at Newtown Medical Center.
“They proceeded to bring her to the hospital and when Scott got into the emergency room he collapsed,” Warren County Public Safety Director Frank Wheatley stated. After desperate attempts to resuscitate him, Wheatley said Danielson died that night.
Hundreds of people showed up to pay tribute to their beloved Captain, a man who lived a life serving others. “He was the ultimate public servant,” Warren County Public Safety Director Frank Wheatley told PEOPLE.
Danielson had been serving the Lakeland, New Jersey rescue squad since age 14. He started as a cadet and rose through the ranks to lead and serve the squad for 35 years.
In addition to his work with the Lakeland squad, Danielson was a three-time elected councilman in Andover Borough. He also worked full-time as captain with the Warren County Public Safety Department, managing the county’s 911 emergency response system.
“There’s a phrase in a war movie that can sum up Scott and his life,” said his brother, Eric Danielson. “There’s nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer. That’s no doubt the truth.”
“Captain Danielson defined the true meaning of being a public servant and serving others,” Morris County Office of Emergency Management stated. “He will be missed.”
Friends and family agree that Danielson lived a life that was focused on the greater good. He worked tirelessly to help others, making his community safer, and living the very definition of what a servant leader looks like.
“He was very, very kind, considerate, warm,” Wheatley expressed. “Public service has been ingrained in the Danielson family.”
Though he will be greatly missed, Danielson’s legacy will live on in the hearts and lives of everyone he inspired.
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