HAGERSTOWN, Md. (DC News Now) — It was a sad day across the region as the driver who died in a fatal tanker crash in Frederick last weekend was laid to rest.

Family and longtime friends of 58-year-old Ronald Heiston, Jr. paid their respects in loving memory. Heiston died in the tanker-truck explosion on Route 15 in Frederick a week ago Saturday.

“Ronnie was a fantastic man,” said longtime friend Randy Nuckles. “[His wife] Lisa was lucky to have him. His children were lucky to have him. He had a cool, little wild spirit to him, but all in a good way.”

Nuckles became close friends with Heiston when they were only 15 years old, just as Ronnie was enrolling in South Hagerstown High School.

Longtime family friend Rachel Parks paid her respects at Monday’s memorial service.

“I know how good a man he was and how much he meant to his family and how much his granddaughters… meant to him. I’m just here to show my support,” Parks said.

Family and friends said Heiston was a passionate Baltimore Orioles and Baltimore Ravens fan.

Jacqueline Wright of Bowie, Maryland worked with Heiston’s wife, Lisa.

“He was a strong family man, a hard worker. It is tragic, so I had to be here,” she said.

Many who came to Ron’s memorial service knew him from his membership with the local Teamsters union.

“I loved the boy with all my heart,” said Nuckles.

“He was a good driver and conscientious worker and a friend to many,” said Clyde Burk, Heiston’s former colleague.

Heiston is survived by his wife, Lisa, a daughter and her fiance, a son and two grandchildren.

The Maryland State Police said the truck Heiston was driving carried more than 8,600 gallons of fuel when it veered off the road, hit a tree and caught fire.