RCMP spokesman Gord Molendyk said: “It will rock the whole community. First of all Enderby is a small, tight-knit community. When you lose an individual who is volunteering his time for the community it will rock that community.”
The tragic incident traumatized the North Okanagan town of 3,000, where Botkin was raise by his parents and later joined the volunteer fire department six years ago.
Enderby fire Chief Kevin Alstad said: “He loved firefighting. It was one of his passions.”
The explosion was so powerful it shook the chair of Ray Baumbach, who lives six blocks away.
“I thought it was an earthquake, it shook the whole house,” he said.
Botkin’s grandmother Sylvia Botkin told the media that his grandchild got married just two months ago.
“They haven’t even got their wedding pictures developed,” Sylvia Botkin said tearfully.
Police has not released any additional information. The causes of the blast are under investigation.
“(He was) pretty well-respected in the community,” said Botkin’s cousin, Glenn Botkin, who lives in Oliver, B.C.
“He had just gotten a promotion in there. He was a very hard-working, clean-cut kid.”
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