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Thread: Veteran Pennsylvania Firefighter Dies While Responding To Call

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    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jan 2002

    Veteran Pennsylvania Firefighter Dies While Responding To Call

    Veteran Pennsylvania Firefighter Dies While Responding To Call

    Updated: 12-28-2004 05:49:24 PM

    INEZ FORD News

    John Stoudt, 66, of The Summit Hill Diligence Fire Company, died December 24, while responding to a call. According to preliminary indications, Firefighter Stoudt suffered a heart attack while climbing aboard the firetruck.

    Firefighter Stoudt was a 49 year member of his department. He served as a chief engineer and was currently serving as his department

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    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Stoudt, John M. "Jackie"

    Age: 66
    Cause of Death: Stress/Overexertion
    Rank: Chief Engineer
    Nature of Death: Heart Attack
    Classification: Volunteer
    Emergency Duty: Yes

    Incident Date: 12/25/2004
    Duty Type: Responding
    Incident Time: 00:03
    Activity Type: Driving/Operating Vehicle/Apparatus
    Death Date: 12/25/2004
    Fixed Prop. Use: Store/Office

    Fire Dept. Info:
    Diligence Fire Company #1
    114 West Ludlow Street
    PO Box 114
    Summit Hill , Pennsylvania 18250
    Chief: Shawn Hoben

    Final Summary:
    Chief Engineer Stoudt and the members of his fire department responded to 3 emergency incidents on December 24, 2004. Just after midnight on Christmas morning, firefighters were dispatched to a structure fire. Chief Engineer Stoudt responded to the fire station and was climbing aboard a ladder truck when he fell backwards and hit the floor. Firefighters came to his aid, and he was soon flown by helicopter to a regional hospital. Chief Engineer Stoudt was pronounced dead as the result of a heart attack approximately 2 hours after collapsing.

    Memorial Fund Info:
    In lieu of flowers, to Ben Salem United Church of Christ, 1965 Ch. Hill Rd., Lehighton, PA 18235; Phone #: 570-386-3870;

  3. #3
    Registered User SeaBreeze's Avatar
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    Jan 2002
    Veteran Summit Hill community firefighter stricken, dies in line of duty on Christmas Eve


    A 49-year veteran of the Summit Hill Fire Department was fatally stricken on Christmas Eve while responding to a house fire.

    John "Jackie" Stoudt, 66, of 100 E. Hazard St., Summit Hill, was pronounced dead on arrival at the Lehigh Valley Hospital in Salisbury Township, where he was flown by MedEvac helicopter. A determined, but unsuccessful, effort was made by ambulance corps members to save Stoudt's life after he collapsed at the Diligence Fire Station in Summit Hill.

    Fire department volunteers had an extremely busy day on Friday. The house fire, which was in Lansford and was reported as a "worker," was their fourth call of the day. They responded to three motor vehicle accidents earlier.

    Summit Hill Fire Chief Shawn Hoben said services for Stoudt are scheduled for 10:30 a.m. Wednesday from the Thomas J. Parambo Funeral Home, 54 W. Fell St., Summit Hill. He said firefighters will be participating in the service. An arch formed by two ladder trucks will be at the entrance to the GAR cemetery where the interment will take place.

    There will be calling hours Tuesday night.

    Hoben commented that he and Stoudt had formed "a tight bond." The chief remarked, "He was very proud of the heritage of the fire company. He's retired and there he was during the day, checking on equipment. He acted as a mentor and father of the younger firefighters. He's a staple in our meetings."

    David Wargo, a member of Summit Hill Borough Council, termed Stoudt, "the epitome of a volunteer."

    Mayor Paul McArdle of Summit Hill said flags at the municipal building and in Ludlow Park have been lowered to half staff as a result of Stoudt's passing. Ironically, the fire company was needed to lower one of the flags. When borough officials tried to lower it, it was jammed. The fire company's aerial truck was used and it was discovered the rope had come off the pulley.

    Stoudt was the engineer for the aerial truck, said Hoben. He also was the fire department's chief engineer and treasurer, positions he had held for years.

    "His passing is a tremendous loss to our community," said Mayor McArdle. "Our townspeople will never know how much because he was a behind-the-scenes type of guy." McArdle added that Stoudt helped with purchases, maintenance, and the driving of the vehicles, besides handling the financial aspect.

    "He will be missed," said the mayor.

    Wargo said, "I know Mr. Stoudt my entire life. He was a part of my life since I was a baby. This is a devastating loss to the community." He added, "He definitely embodied the spirit of a true fireman."

    Stoudt had been actively pushing to have Summit Hill Borough Council construct a new fire house, one which affords the volunteers adequate room for apparatus and more modern amenities. Just a few weeks ago, he escorted some members of the council as well as a TIMES NEWS reporter on a tour of the present fire house and pointed out the existing deficiences of the structure.


    Stoudt was the husband of Shirley (Dower) Stoudt. They observed their 45th wedding anniversary last May.

    He worked for the Pa. Turnpike Commission as a shift leader before retiring in 2002.

    Born in Pottsville, he was a son of the late John and Gladys (Sassman) Stoudt.

    He was a member of Bensalem U.C.C. Church, Lehighton.

    Stoudt was an active member of the Diligence Fire Company for 49 years, having served as its chief engineer for several years and as its current treasurer. He was a member of the Four-County Firemen's Association; a delegate to the Carbon County Firemen's Association; and a member of the Summit Hill Volunteer Firemen's Relief Association, Panther Valley Masonic Lodge 677, Lilly Chapter and Commandery, Rajah Shrine, Reading, and the Schuylkill Shrine Club.

    Surviving in addition to his widow are a son Kevin and his wife, Joan, of Tamaqua; a granddaughter and a cousin.

    The Thomas J. Parambo Funeral Home, 54 W. Fell St., Summit Hill, is in charge of the arrangements.

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