Toledo firefighters die after battling apartment complex blaze
Mon, 27 Jan 2014 10:00:00 GMT —
The Toledo Fire Department is mourning the loss of two of its own Sunday after a structure fire near downtown Toledo.
The two firefighters were taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center around 3:30 p.m. after battling a blaze at an apartment complex at 528 Magnolia Street, near the Huron Market. They were pulled from the burning building by their fellow firefighters.
Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins was at the hospital Sunday with members of the fire department, many of whom were still in their full gear.
Toledo fire officials released details regarding the deaths of their fellow firefighters at a Sunday night press conference held at Toledo Fire Headquarters.
Killed as a result of the blaze were a 42-year-old Stephen Machcinski, a 16-year veteran of the fire department, and 31-year-old James Dickman, who joined the force in September 2013.
Toledo Fire Chief Luis Santiago said that fellow firefighters made "valiant efforts" to save the men during the fire and began lifesaving measures after they were taken from the building.
No tenants of the apartment complex were injured in the blaze.
Mayor Collins, himself a former first responder as a veteran of the Toledo Police Department, offered his thoughts on the day's tragic events. "Those who are engaged in public service ironically take a different path," said the mayor. "They run into harm's way as opposed to running away from harm's way." He asked that all flags in Toledo be lowered to half-mast as of 8 a.m. Monday in honor of the fallen firefighters.
A page was set up on Facebook Sunday to signal a Toledo Fire & Rescue 'Last Alarm' for the fallen firefighters, dated 1/26/2014.
The last Toledo firefighter killed in the line of duty was Michael Darrington who was found unresponsive inside Fire Station No. 14 in South Toledo in February 2009. He was 45. Officials said he died of a heart attack.