Community Members Gather to Dedicate ‘Firefighter Robert Fowler Memorial Highway’

A portion of New York state highway in the Village of Spencerport is now dedicated to a firefighter who lost his life in the line of duty

Assemblyman Josh Jensen (R,C-Greece), today, was joined by the family of Firefighter Robert Fowler, fellow elected officials including Senate Minority Leader Rob Ortt and community members for a ceremony commemorating the dedication of a portion of New York state highway in the Village of Spencerport in honor of the fallen firefighter.

With legislation signed into law in 2022 (A.8534-2022), a portion of South Union Street, in the heart of the village was dedicated as “Firefighter Robert Fowler Memorial Highway.”Robert “Bob” Fowler was a member of the Spencerport Fire Department, who, when responding to a call on Feb. 22, 1997, tragically lost his life in the line of duty. During a severe windstorm, a 40-foot tree fell onto his car tragically taking his life while narrowly sparing his son who was responding with him.

Firefighter Fowler joined the Spencerport Fire Department in 1974 serving and protecting the people of his community as well as organizing a Christmas party for the children of department members and being there for his fire department family when needed. At the time of his death, Bob was a sixth-grade teacher in the Byron-Bergen School District, having been an educator for 31 years. Fowler was survived by his wife Gail and sons Alan and Tim.

“Firefighter Fowler is a true community hero who lived his life with a willingness to serve others. It is an incredible honor to create a lasting memorial for not only him but the Fowler family, the Spencerport Fire Department and residents of Spencerport and Ogden,” said Assemblyman Jensen. “We will forever remember his sacrifice and continue to honor him while driving through the village every day.”

“Our family is grateful to Assemblyman Jensen. Bob wanted to serve his community. We are pleased that Bob is being honored for his service. We hope that when those who knew Bob see the sign, they will remember him and smile. We also hope that this sign will remind everyone of the service, dedication and sacrifice of all firefighters and first responders,” said Gail Fowler.

“Firefighter Bob Fowler will forever be remembered as a hero. He selflessly rushed toward danger to help others that day, fully aware of the risks that came with his duty as a firefighter. His life and his legacy are inspirational—and will now be enshrined into our history as we dedicate this portion of highway in his memory,” said Sen. Ortt.

“Although our membership has changed over the years, Bob’s memory is alive and well in those of us who knew him. Bob loved this fire department and the community in which he lived and served. He was a wonderful friend, a great father and a loving husband. Bob’s memory will remain alive and well in this department, and we will never forget him. This sign dedication is an enduring tribute to our fallen brother, and we appreciate all the support from the community,” said Spencerport Fire Department Chief Mitch Flagg.