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Thread: Jacksonville Firefighter Dies Of Heatstroke

  1. #1
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jan 2002

    Jacksonville Firefighter Dies Of Heatstroke

    Funeral Plans Set for Local Firefighter

    By Erin Elmore & First Coast News Staff

    JACKSONVILLE, FL -- Funeral arrangements are now planned for a local firefigher who lost his life while training to save others.

    Visitation for Karl Kramer will be held at Corey Kerlin Funeral Home, 940 Cesery Boulevard, in Jacksonville on Wednesday, June 1, from 4 p.m. until 8 p.m. Funeral services will be held at St. Matthews Lutheran Church, 6801 Merrill Road in Jacksonville on Thursday June 2, at 10 a.m. with burial to follow at Arlington Park Cemetery, 6920 Lone Star Road.

    The family asks in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department's Ceremonial Engine Fund.

    Karl Kramer was leading a run at the Jacksonville Fire Training Center. He suddenly collapsed, and after 10 days in the hospital, died.

    "Karl seemed to be fine during the run, and then during the end he just fell out," said JFRD trainee Michael Belcher.

    Everyone associated with the fire department was devestated to learn that Karl will never be coming back.

    "He was a great guy," said trainee Rod Ziriak.

    "He was a better friend. It is breaking me up... breaking everybody up. Everyone in the class is taking it pretty hard."

    Fire department officals are not releasing specific details regarding the death but say heat may not have been the only factor.

    "This was not simply a heat related event, and over time it will become more clear, but there were contributing factors," said Nick Tison, JFRD facilities coordinator.

    They're factors that won't overshadow the life of a cadet on his way to becoming one of Jacksonville's finest.

    "(Kramer) was a very good recruit. He made his father proud and would have made the citizens of Jacksonville proud," Tison said.

    This isn't the first time a recruit collapsed during training. But this is the first time anyone's spent that much time hospitalized or lost their life.

    Jacksonville Fire and Rescue is conducting an internal investigation. They tell First Coast News there is always plenty of water on-hand for the recruits to drink.

    An autopsy is now underway. The state is also looking into the death.

  2. #2
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    Firefighter Trainee Collapses, Dies

    POSTED: 8:12 am EDT May 30, 2005

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- City officials are waiting for answers after a 22-year-old Jacksonville Fire and Rescue recruit died nine days after he collapsed during training.

    Karl "Kliff" Kramer collapsed May 19 while undergoing physical training at the department's fire academy.

    Kramer died Saturday at Memorial Hospital, where he had been in intensive care since his collapse.

    A spokeswoman for Jacksonville Fire and Rescue would not comment on the specifics of Kramer's death until an autopsy is conducted to determine the cause of his death.

    "The training academy continually looks at the way they conduct exercise," spokeswoman Bennie Seth said. "They continuously monitor the weather conditions, and those things will continue on as scheduled."

    Other fire recruits told Channel 4's Bryan Kelly that the intense training makes everyone in the class close, "like a family."

    "He had a real strong personality," Jacksonville Fire and Rescue cadet Mike Blcher said. "Whatever we were doing, he was always light hearted. We'll miss him."

    Funeral services will be held at St. Matthews Lutheran Church, 6801 Merill Rd., Thursday.

  3. #3
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    Jan 2002
    Services Held For Fire Cadet Who Collapsed, Died

    POSTED: 4:07 pm EDT June 2, 2005

    JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Funeral services were held Thursday for a 22-year-old fire recruit who collapsed during a physical training exercise last month.

    "This is a very difficult time for the Jacksonville Fire (and Rescue) Department and the citizens of Jacksonville," JFRD spokeswoman Bennie Seth said. "Our hearts are aching as we bury one of our brothers."

    More than 600 mourners gathered at St. Mathews while dozens of fire trucks and police cars lined the road outside. It was an overwhelming show of appreciation for a young cadet who unexpectedly collapsed May 19 during a routine drill at the JFRD academy.

    "The class had taken this very, very hard," Seth said. "They become very close as they go through training. They're learning new things together. They are experiencing new things together, so they do become very close."

    Hundreds of those same mourners followed in the procession to Arlington Park Cemetery, where Kramer was laid to rest. Helicopters flew overhead in the missing man formation and an American flag was draped over the road, supported by two fire engines.

    Flanked by firefighters, fire engine No. 112 -- specially requested by Kramer's father, a JFRD chief -- slowly entered the cemetery to Kramer's final destination.

    Flanked by firefighters, fire engine No. 112 slowly entered Arlington Park Cemetery, where Kramer was laid to rest. Kramer's father, a JFRD chief, specially requested the truck carrying Kramer's casket.

    Kramer, nicknamed "Kliff," spent the nine days leading up to his death at Memorial Hospital's intensive care unit. His death came as a surprise to those who knew him.

    "We are mourning together," Seth said. "We are going to be strong together and we are going to remember 'Kliff' together always."

    Kramer was buried next to his grandfather.

  4. #4
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    Kramer, Karl "Kliff"

    Age: 22
    Cause of Death: Unknown
    Rank: Firefighter Recruit
    Nature of Death:
    Classification: Career
    Emergency Duty: No

    Incident Date: 05/19/2005
    Duty Type: Training
    Incident Time: 17:00
    Activity Type: Fitness Activity
    Death Date: 05/28/2005
    Fixed Prop. Use: Outdoor Property

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department
    515 N Julia St.
    Jacksonville , Florida 32202
    Chief: Richard A. Barrett

    Initial Summary:
    Collapsed while undergoing physical training at thedepartment's fire academy and died nine days later from a cause still to be determined.

    Memorial Fund Info:
    In lieu of flowers, the family requests memorials be made to the City of Jacksonville, attention Hilda Westberry, in memory of Firefighter Karl K. Kramer for the JFRD Ceremonial Memorial Engine Fund, 515 N. Julia St., Jacksonville, FL 32202

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