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Wake for Peabody firefighter on Thursday

December 29, 2011
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PEABODY, Mass.—Hundreds of firefighters and well-wishers have paid their last respects to a Peabody firefighter who died battling a fire last week.

Members of the Peabody fire and police departments marched in a solemn procession Thursday afternoon as other mourners gathered at the Conway, Cahill-Brodeur Funeral Home for the wake for 42-year-old James Rice.

The mourners included the family of Worcester firefighter Jon Davies who was killed after the rear of burning building collapsed on him three weeks earlier.

The 11-year veteran was killed while fighting a three-alarm blaze last Friday at a multi-unit home.

The exact cause of death remains under investigation but officials believe he may have breathed in toxic fumes.

The fire was ruled accidental.

Rice leaves a wife and three children.

A funeral is scheduled for Friday.

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