Death – St. Louis firefighter dies after roof collapse during house fire

Death – Obituary

ST. LOUIS, Mo. – One firefighter is dead and another is injured after a two-story house fire in north St. Louis where the roof of the building collapsed while firefighters were still inside.

The building is located in the 5900 block of Cote Brilliante. Another nearby building was also damaged during the fire. No one was inside at the time of the fire.

Firefighters were able to knock down the fire on the first floor and then made their way to the second floor. While on the second floor, firefighters made the decision to back out due to the intensity of the fire. As they were leaving, the roof collapsed, burying two firefighters, according to St. Louis Fire Department Chief Dennis Jenkerson.

The collapse of the roof caused heavy timber and bricks to fall on the firefighters causing the death of one firefighter and injuring the other.

“Once these things come down, they normally don’t give you a warning. These are old buildings here; these are three or four-course bricks, so there’s a lot of weight, a lot of heavy timber, so when it comes down … if you’re in the way of that falling timber, it’s normally serious injuries and in this case, it proved to be grave injuries,” Jenkerson said.

Officials are looking into the conditions of the building and what may have led to the collapse. Jenkerson noted there were bars on the outside of the house, so it may have been occupied.

First responders were able to find the trapped firefighters. The injured firefighter was taken to the hospital. The identity of the deceased firefighter has not been released. The firefighter’s next of kin still need to be notified.

“There’s no words to describe what the feeling is right now amongst the St. Louis Fire Department,” Jenkerson said. “The risk we took today wasn’t worth it; we lost a firefighter.”

The home is a total loss and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

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What Is An Obituary

In national newspapers an obituary (obit for short) is a news article that reports the recent death of a prominent person. Although it tends to focus on positive aspects of the subject’s life this is not always the case. According to Nigel Farndale, the Obituaries Editor of The Times: “Obits should be life affirming rather than gloomy, but they should also be opinionated, leaving the reader with a strong sense of whether the subject lived a good life or bad; whether they were right or wrong in the handling of their public affairs.”

In local newspapers, an obituary may be published for any local resident upon death. A necrology is a register or list of records of the deaths of people related to a particular organization, group or field, which may only contain the sparsest details, or small obituaries. Historical necrologies can be important sources of information.