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Thread: Former Fire Chief Was 'Always There' For Others

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    Moderator patries's Avatar
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    Former Fire Chief Was 'Always There' For Others

    A veteran volunteer firefighter and former fire chief died on January 12, his 48th birthday, after suffering an apparant heart attack while operating at a structure fire that also left 7-year-old triplets dead.

    Waldo County Sheriff Robert M. Jones served as a volunteer firefighter for 28 years and as a fire chief for 8 years. He has been with the county Sheriff

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    Moderator patries's Avatar
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    Child Playing with Lighter Caused Fire That Claimed Firefighter, Triplets

    A child playing with a cigarette lighter ignited a blaze that swept through a Unity, Maine house last week, killing the boy and his two triplet brothers and causing the death of a veteran firefighter who suffered a fatal heart attack, state fire officials said this weekend.

    Robert Jones, who had a heart condition, was setting up water supply operations at the scene when he collapsed. The former fire chief and the Sheriff for Waldo County, was pronounced dead a short time later.

    State fire officials said the boys were playing in a family room when one of them ignited a sofa bed with the lighter. The fire spread quickly. The boys died from smoke inhalation. Their mother and sister escaped the blaze without serious injury.

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    Blaze Claims Veteran Maine Firefighter, Triplets

    UNITY, Maine (AP) -- As neighbors and family friends wept, the bodies of three 7-year-old triplets were pulled from the charred wreckage of their home.

    Firefighters also were mourning the loss of a comrade who collapsed at the scene of the blaze and later died, said Stephen McCausland of the Maine Public Safety Department.

    Robert M. Jones, 48, the Waldo County Sheriff, was pronounced dead at MaineGeneral Medical Center, a hospital spokesman said. Jones used to be chief of the Unity fire department.

    Firefighter Mike Heath appeared shaken after learning of Jones' death, throwing down his helmet and coat. He was consoled by other firefighters and deputies.

    ``Right now, I'm not even thinking straight,'' said Dennis Turner, the town fire chief, who said he had known Jones since 1972.

    The boys were identified as Josh, Marcus and Brydon Freyer. Carmen Freyer, 28, the boys' mother, was hospitalized in good condition after escaping with her 2-year-old daughter.

    Neighbor Todd Converse helped save the daughter after hearing Freyer calling for help Wednesday afternoon. He ran into a smoke-filled, glass-enclosed porch in the back of the house.

    ``I saw two little feet and I grabbed her,'' he said. The diaper-clad child was covered with soot, he said. As rescuers led Freyer away, she looked back at her home and repeatedly screamed ``I love you.''

    Two neighbors sobbed and held each other while watching the house burn: Danielle Creasy, who said she baby-sat the triplets, and family friend Tammy Knowlton.

    Teachers from Unity Elementary School, where the triplets were enrolled in a special-education program, watched silently. Neighbors said the boys' father, Kurt Freyer, was out of state driving a tractor-trailer.

    State fire marshals were expected to investigate the blaze.

    The house was located on a residential side street off Route 139, near the center of this college and farming town, about 30 miles southwest of Bangor.

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    Moderator patries's Avatar
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    Child Playing with Lighter Caused Fire That Claimed Firefighter, Triplets

    A child playing with a cigarette lighter ignited a blaze that swept through a Unity, Maine house last week, killing the boy and his two triplet brothers and causing the death of a veteran firefighter who suffered a fatal heart attack, state fire officials said this weekend.

    Robert Jones, who had a heart condition, was setting up water supply operations at the scene when he collapsed. The former fire chief and the Sheriff for Waldo County, was pronounced dead a short time later.

    Jones' funeral will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 18 in Colby College at 11 a.m. Viewing will be held on Monday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m, also at Unity College.

    State fire officials said the boys were playing in a family room when one of them ignited a sofa bed with the lighter. The fire spread quickly. The boys died from smoke inhalation. Their mother and sister escaped the blaze without serious injury.

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    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jones, Robert M.

    Age: 48
    Rank: Firefighter
    Status: Volunteer
    Incident Date: 01/12/2000
    Incident Time: 16:23
    Death Date: 01/12/2000

    Cause of Death: Stress/Exertion
    Nature of Death: Heart Attack
    Duty Type: Fireground Operations
    Activity Type: Advancing Hose Lines/Fire Attack
    Fixed Prop. Use: Residential

    Fire Dept. Info: Unity Volunteer Fire Department
    P.O. Box 21
    Unity, Maine 04988
    Chief: Dennis A. Turner Sr.

    Final Summary:
    Firefighter Jones was preparing to use a dry hydrant to supply water in support of a fire fight in a residential structure. Firefighter Jones attached a large diameter hoseline to the pumper, removed the cap from the dry hydrant, and was preparing to attach a suction hose to the hydrant. Another firefighter, who was assisting Firefighter Jones, came around the truck and found Firefighter Jones on the ground. After calling for help, the assisting firefighter began CPR. Despite treatment on the scene and in the ambulance, Firefighter Jones died. The cause of death was listed as a heart attack. Firefighter Jones had served as the Chief of his fire department from 1990-98, and was currently serving as the Sheriff of Waldo County. Firefighter Jones died on his 48th birthday. The fire was caused when one of three triplet boys inadvertently set a sofa on fire. All three boys, who were age 6, died in the fire.


    http://www.usfa.fema.gov/application...l.cfm?p_id=573

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