WESLACO, Texas (KVEO) — The Perez family was joined by local officials for a final goodbye ceremony and procession for 4-year-old Justin Perez.
Family, friends, and local officials gathered to say their final goodbyes followed by a procession to San Martin De Porres Catholic Church in Weslaco.
Justin, who was a Make-A-Wish child and dreamed of becoming a firefighter, passed away last week.
Last month the McAllen Fire Department received a call from the Hidalgo County Fire Marshall’s Office to help Justin live out his dream.
The Hidalgo County Fire Marshall’s Office, McAllen Fire Department, Edinburg Fire Department, and a few other departments in the area came together to make that wish come true.
With joint efforts, Justin became an honorary fire chief for a day.
“We had an awesome day here at the station,” said Juan Gloria, McAllen’s Fire Department Assistant Chief.
Gloria told KVEO that the day was full of activities, including Justin putting out a small, contained fire. Justin was also gifted his own bunker gear, a helmet, a badge, a radio strap, and flew in a helicopter with the Department of Public Safety.
That uniform was hung up today in honor of Justin at the Guerra Funeral Home.
Gloria said the McAllen Fire Department will keep the memory of Perez strong as they hang the portrait Make-A-Wish gifted them.
The portrait will hang in Gloria’s office for “years to come.”