Brownsville firefighter remembered as a 'pioneer' following battle with cancer

1 week 3 days 7 hours ago Monday, November 20 2023 Nov 20, 2023 November 20, 2023 7:31 PM November 20, 2023 in News - Local

A Brownsville woman will be remembered as a fighter, in and out of the Brownsville Fire Department.

On Sunday, Cindy Puente lost her life after a hard battle with breast, lung, and brain cancer.

“It's a terrible loss,” Brownsville fire Lt. Rodrigo Rangel said. “Cindy's been a staple of our department since I came in. When I came in, she was already an experienced driver."

Puente worked with the Brownsville Fire Department for 22 years. She was only the second woman firefighter to be hired by the department.

She also became the first woman to drive the department’s fire trucks.

"She was obviously a pioneer in the firefighting industry,” Brownsville deputy fire Chief Rick Najera said. "She knew the industry, she knew firefighting tactics. She was a great woman as well as a great firefighter driver."

Station 7 was where she spent her final years as a driver.

Puente retired in September 2022 following her cancer diagnosis.

She was known as someone who had a love for the industry, and was always there for the community.

“We hope to have several other individuals, females, to come into the department and look up to that kind of individual,” Najera said. “But anybody coming in from here on is gonna have some big shoes to fill."

Watch the video above for the full story. 

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