HEATHER CASPI Firehouse.com News

A Washington firefighter collapsed and died after arriving at the scene of a fire call on Saturday, September 8.

According to the Port Townsend Fire Department, Firefighter/Engineer Allan "Mac" Marriott collapsed of a cardiac event while performing fire ground operations.

The call came in for a working boat fire at the town's historic Victorian seaport, where 200-300 boats were gathered for the area's 25th Annual Wooden Boat Festival.

The fire crew had already begun stretching hose before they found that it was a false alarm, a barbecue on the back of one boat.

Marriot was at his post at the engine when he was stricken.

"A paramedic and an EMT were within ten feet when he collapsed," said PIO Patrick Young. The medics immediately began CPR and transported Marriot to a hospital just three miles away, where ER personnel continued efforts to revive the firefighter for another hour and a half. He was pronounced dead at about 11 p.m.

Marriot, 46, is survived by his wife, three adult children, one grandchild and another grandchild on the way. He volunteered for the fire department for 21 years.

His colleagues remember him most for his unique humor and his dedication.

Young described Marriot as a comedian. "When you were around him you couldn't stop smiling and laughing," he said.

Marriot, who did maintenance for a large retirement neighborhood, knew just about everybody in town and was always willing to help people, Young said.

The firefighter received the department's "top responder" award many times throughout his career and averaged a response rate of about 45 percent.

This is the first firefighter line of duty death in Port Townsend since the early 1940s. The 127-year-old fire department is one of the oldest on the West Coast, and was established one year before the Seattle Fire Department, Young said.

In lieu of flowers, Marriot's family requests that donations be made to the Jefferson County Historical Society's Fire Bell restoration project. Gifts in Marriot's name may be sent to "JCHS" 540 Water Street, Port Townsend WA, 98368.

Memorial services was held on Thursday, September 13, at 2 p.m. at the McCurdy Pavilion, located inside Fort Worden State Park north of Port Townsend. A staging area for fire apparatus will be set up next to the Safeway, in the Park and Ride located off of Hwy 20. Line up will began at 12 noon, and fire department dress was requested.