TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - It has been just over a year since firefighter John Schoffstall died of COVID-19.
Terre Haute Fire Department honored Schoffstall in a special way Thursday evening.
They built a bench made of 250 pounds of recycled plastic bottle caps. John's son Jake found this fitting, as his dad was a devout conservationist.
Schoffstall was a firefighter, a hunter, a friend, but most importantly, a father.
"Dad meant the world to me, he meant the world to a lot of people. And everything he did, he showed me how to have a hard work ethic. He taught me how to live my life," said John's son Jake.
Jake said his favorite memories with his dad are coming home from football practice and going through trail camera videos of deer.
"Going through and doing that and not being able to do that anymore has really been a hard part of that," said Schoffstall.
Firefighters shared a lot of common interests with Schoffstall.
"Me and him obviously both enjoy the outdoors and I think that bench right there, you know, being a recycled material is a great tribute to him," said Terre Haute Fire Chief Bill Berry.
John had a passion for hunting, the outdoors and firefighting. He loved what he did and loved his family.
"The impact, it was huge. It was substantial to my life. I owe all the success in my life to my father," said Jake.
That success is taking Jake to Ball State University to study wildlife biology and conservation.
He is looking to live out his father's legacy, carrying it on to honor him.
"We really had a good run, while he was here. He really showed me a lot and that meant a lot to me," said Jake.
The firefighters say they are excited to have the bench at the station.
They say having it there makes it feel like a part of John is still there with them.