A Rhode Island firefighter was killed Wednesday morning when his engine flipped over while returning from a structure fire. Ralph "Warren" Blackmar, 66, was a longtime member of the South Foster Fire Department.

He apparently suffered a heart attack before losing control of the truck, officials said. At about 9 a.m. the truck left the roadway, struck a utility pole and rolled over.

Blackmar was pronounced dead at Rhode Island Hospital.

Chief Gordon Brayton described Blackmar as a very dedicated member of the fire department, and 100 percent dependable during daytime hours when fewer volunteers are available to answer calls.

"He was a very professional member. He did his job and he did it right," the chief said.

Although an investigation is still underway, officials believe a heart attack is likely the cause of the accident.

"When I heard the news I knew that something more than being in an accident was up," Brayton said, because Blackmar was not a reckless driver. Brayton said he will release additional information after speaking with Blackmar's family.

The last line of duty death in the department was 30 years ago, when the chief died of a heart attack at a brush fire. The 30 member, all volunteer department serves a population of about 2,000.

A memorial service was held on Sunday, August 12, 2001, at the South Foster Fire Station, 7 Mount Hygeia Rd(Corner of US 6 and RI 94), Foster, RI 02825 at 2:00 PM.