Reporting Christie Ileto
BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Heartbroken family and friends say their last goodbyes to Baltimore City firefighter Andrew Hoffman. He was laid to rest Saturday after he and his girlfriend were shot to death inside his home last weekend.
Christie Ileto explains how Hoffman is being remembered.
Family and friends say Andrew Hoffman was the definition of a hero, and rather than focusing on how he died, they’d rather focus on how he lived his life.
The blue line of Baltimore City firefighters stands one short Saturday, as officers salute while the casket of slain firefighter Andrew Hoffman is carried inside the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen.
“It’s a very somber mood. It’s a tragedy to his family, but it’s also a tragedy to the fire department family,” said city firefighter paramedic Michael Hineline.
Hoffman and his new girlfriend, 26-year-old Marie Hartman, were gunned down in his Glen Burnie home earlier this week. Hartman’s sister escaped through a window.
Investigators say the killer — Hartman’s ex-boyfriend, Baltimore City police officer Christopher Lee Robinson — took his own life after shooting the pair.
“We just want answers. We want to know why.”
While family and friends try to make sense of this tragic shooting, his work family at the firehouse plan to remember Hoffman as the hero he was every day.
“We use the word hero in this job, and sometimes that word is used loosely. And in this case, Andy is a hero, not only to us, but some of his actions on the job,” said Hineline.
Hoffman was awarded the Chief Thomas Burke Courage Medal in 2010 for rescuing a man in a fire on Gilmore Street. And earlier this year he was interviewed by WJZ for saving a lost 3-year-old boy.
Hoffman’s loved ones are trying to cope with a life without him.
“They can have comfort that their son, grandson and brother was a hero and truly respected by the department around the city. It’s a great loss to us,” Hineline said.
The legacy he leaves behind is one the long blue line says any family would be proud of.
Hoffman was a third generation firefighter.
About 900 people filled the Cathedral. Nearly half were city firefighters.
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