Posts Tagged double firefighter line of duty death in Toledo

Double LODD in Toledo, 1/26/14 (more)

This from Dan McInerney:

I attended the LODD service in Toledo a few days back. On a personal note, two years ago, I was instructing a live-fire attack class for Bowling Green State University and Firefighter James Dickman was a student. I remember him well. He was very enthusiastic and his love of the fire service was evident.
During my stay in Toledo, the outpouring of emotion from everybody whether they were firefighters or citizens was evident throughout. It was  a tragic event for the entire city. Hearing now that it was arson makes the wounds suffered that much deeper.
Attached are a few pictures from the Thursday night service. The pics were taken with a cameraphone and the lighting was not great for a small non-flash camera.
memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters

Dan McInerney photo

memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters

Dan McInerney photo

memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters

Dan McInerney photo

Also from Dan, the service program.

memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters

memorial service for fallen Toledo firefighters

Drew Smith found this editorial piece from the Toldeo Free Press that preceded the funerals:

Ever since the first blast hit and Northwest Ohio was dumped with almost two feet of snow, this winter has felt different. We have had incredibly mild winters in recent years, especially for where we live and our history. As the near-blizzard of 2014 hit, I would see family members of local firefighters and police officers post on social media how dangerous their loved ones’ jobs were getting.

While we were all tucked in warm and safe under a level 3 snow emergency, these men and women were in harm’s way. Police were out on the iciest of roads, rescuing drivers who never should have left their homes but needed to pick up one quick thing from the mall. Firefighters had their calls multiply for numerous reasons, from dealing with health-related injuries to electric heaters catching fire.All this was going on as Facebook post after post showed water-related Mr. Wizard-like experiments demonstrating how cold it was. We were are all amazed, but few of us thought about those who have to use water in these conditions to save a life or a structure.

The events of Jan. 26 made this winter unbearable.

There is something about my West Side neighborhood that mass produces teachers, police officers and firefighters. One of my classmates lost her husband and the father of her children when TPD Detective Keith Dressel was killed in 2007. I remember how shocked I was when I recognized her face on TV, how that immediately punched me in the stomach and brought tears to my eyes. This had not taken place in New York or Chicago, but here in Toledo. I thought about her son and daughter and how their lives were forever changed, impacted by both their father’s heroism and a coward.

My Sunday was consumed with all the comforts everyone should experience: wine, a roaring fire and great television. My iPhone had numerous unanswered texts from those informing me of what happened, asking if I knew one of the firefighters who were lost. I had no idea of anything. I reached out to friends and family who love a firefighter. The first name I heard was Machcinski and my heart stopped. Everyone in Toledo knows a Machcinski; Steve and I went to Whitmer together.

The second name came with a story that made it worse. The other firefighter, James Dickman, was new to the Toledo Fire Department and a new father. How proud he must have felt, his life’s dream and hard work paying off. His future was as bright as the flames he would soon be facing, all to be extinguished in a moment.

I realized that new faces would join Danielle Dressel and her children. That two more families lost sons, brothers, husbands and, in Dickman’s case, fathers. That two men who left for work would never walk back through the door, all because they wanted to keep us safe, while providing for their loved ones.

Yesterday did not happen in Detroit nor Chicago; it happened on Magnolia Street. We are very fortunate with the number of fires and arsons in our area that this has not happened more often. Our luck ran out yesterday.

Will you please join me? As a sign of respect, love and gratitude for the two lives lost and those who survived and continue to keep us safe, I think we Toledoans should line the streets of the funeral processions and say our goodbyes and thanks to the fallen heroes and their families. Let’s show these grieving families these sacrifices will not be forgotten and these names will be remembered. Let’s show those who carry ladders and hoses or guns that we appreciate and love them for what they do. Let’s remind our children what a real superhero looks like and what the noblest jobs are.

It may be -50 degrees out when these fallen heroes drive by for the last time, but the weather should not stop you; it didn’t stop them when fighting this fire. It would once again remind the world the amount of heart we have and who we are. On our soon-to-be- coldest day in recent decades, let’s give warmth to those who will need it most.

If your heart is not broken or even heavy, then you must not be from the 419. We all love to complain how miserable this winter seems, but 99 percent of us have no idea how cold and dangerous it has been.

To the grieving families and brothers and sisters of the Toledo Fire Department: I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. These lives will not be forgotten.


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Double LODD in Toledo, 1/26/14 (more)

This from the Toledo Blade:

The final alarm rang tonight for two of Toledo’s bravest killed in the line of duty four days ago.

“May God rest their souls. We’ll take it from here brothers,” a fire dispatcher announced during a service in honor of Pvts. James Dickman and Stephen Machcinski — the two firefighters killed Sunday while searching for potentially trapped residents in a devastating North Toledo building fire.

More than 5,000 people packed the SeaGate Centre tonight for a two-hour funeral service in honor of the firefighters.

Ret. Toledo Assistant Fire Chief Robert Schwantzl read both men’s records before a bell was rung three times for each — a tradition for funerals of firefighters.

Tears filled the eyes of veteran firefighters and civilians alike as the two Toledo firefighters were eulogized repeatedly and as their families were presented with medals in honor of their sacrifices.

The families of Privates Dickman and Machcinski — sitting before their flag-covered caskets — accepted the International Association of Firefighters medal of honor.

Family members of the two men clutched each others’ hands as they entered the service and throughout the program.

Toledo Fire Battalion Chief Sally Glombowski, who was selected as a representative of the Dickman family, said the young firefighter loved his family fiercely and cared about people most of all.

Toledo Fire Chief Luis Santiago said he was struck how the Dickman and Machcinski families were concerned about the fire department’s well-being despite their own overwhelming grief and suffering.

“Stephen and Jamie may be gone, they have left, but they will always be part of our family,” he said.

Chief Santiago acknowledged the scores of firefighters from across the nation and Canada who traveled to Toledo for the service.

The somber ceremony was marked with pictures of the two fallen firefighters displayed while the St. Francis choir sang “On Eagles Wings.”

“There are no words that can express the sadness in our hearts,” Toledo Battalion Chief John Kaminski said before the thousands gathered.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D., Ohio) — one of several public officials addressing the families and people attending — said he struggled with what to say to honor the two firefighters.

The senator lauded the two men — recalling how Private Dickman’s two dreams were to marry his wife Jamie and also to become a Toledo firefighter.

After his remarks, Senator Brown and U.S. Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D., Toledo) presented American flags to the Machcinski and Dickman families. Both flags were flown above the U.S Capitol Sunday.

“This [service] confirms what we have known all along about the brotherhood of firefighters and what we have learned about the people of Toledo – that they support the firefighters of Local 92,” said Doug Stern, a spokesman for the Ohio Association of Professional Firefighters.

Columbus Fire Battalion Chief Tracy Smith was among 60 from that department who came to Toledo today for the service.

“There is an outpouring of support for the department that’s affected when something like this happens,” Chief Smith said. “It hits close to home for us since it is Ohio and we are all a tight-knit group.”

Tom Ryan, president of the Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2, echoed the same sentiment as many of the scores of other firefighters gathered to pay tribute to Privates Dickman and Machcinski.

“We are all family and when we lose one it is felt deeply by all of us,” Mr. Ryan said. “This is outstanding. We lost five of our own in recent years and we are just repaying by being here.”

This from Tom Clifton:

I know it's not Chicago but I figured I would send this in. I attended the visitation for one of the fallen firefighters in Toledo. The 1st picture is Engine 13 parked in front of the funeral home. As I was about to start my way back home to Chicago I caught a fire at 1202 Idaho in Toledo. I took a few photos of the scene. I arrived to some active fire but trying to park a car on a snow covered side street in Toledo I think is actually worse than Chicago. Tom Clifton


Toledo fire engine at funeral home

Tom Clifton photo

fire scene in Toledo

Tom Clifton photo

Toledo fire engine at fire scene

Tom Clifton photo

fire scene in Toledo

Tom Clifton photo

Toledo fire truck

Tom Clifton photo


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Double LODD in Toledo, 1/26/14

Tragic news from Toldedo on Sunday. Two firefighters died battling a fire in a small apartment building. This from The Blade:

Two Toledo firefighters were killed on Sunday while battling an apartment complex fire in North Toledo — the city’s first firefighter fatalities from an active blaze since 1981. Stephen A. Machcinski, 42, and James Dickman, 31, died of injuries sustained while fighting a fire at 528 Magnolia St.

Private Machcinski had more than 15 years of service. Private Dickman was appointed to the department in September. His fire class of 51 recruits, sworn in on Sept. 3, has not yet had its graduation ceremony. Privates Machcinski and Dickman were among the firefighters who went into a six-unit apartment building after a blaze was reported at 2:47 p.m.

Stephen A. Machcinski, 42, left, and James Dickman, 31, right, of the Toledo Fire & Rescue Department died in the line of duty Sunday.

A despondent Fire Chief Luis Santiago, at a news conference Sunday night at the downtown headquarters, said that inside the burning building the two — who were both assigned to Engine 3 — suffered fatal injuries.

Firefighters went into the building to look for Privates Machcinski and Dickman, who were lost in the fire for several minutes, according to radio traffic.

“After what could be described as valiant efforts” the two were pulled from the still-burning building and other firefighters “began immediate … life-saving’’ attempts, Chief Santiago said. The two were then taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center where they were pronounced dead.

Mayor D. Michael Collins, at the news conference, said firefighters and police officers are different in that “they run into harm’s way instead of running away” from it.

After the news conference, Mayor Collins said Mr. Dickman’s parents, who live in Mansfield, Ohio, were escorted to Toledo by the Ohio Highway Patrol on Sunday.

A firefigher is taken down the stairs as smoke pours from the building in North Toledo. Attempts to revive both firefighters were made at the scene.Firefighters could be seen removing the second firefighter from the back part of the building still engulfed in smoke around 3:30 p.m. The firefighter, laid on a stretcher, was taken away by Lucas County EMS.

Over the next two hours, firefighters doused the smoking structure with water. Flames occasionally erupted from the roof.

Lucas County records show the two-story, mixed residential and commercial building has been owned by Ray and Mariam Abouarab since 1992, when the sale price was $36,000. Its current value is $101,500. The primary structure was built in 1877, according to county records.

Several fires have been reported at the 137-year-old North Toledo building several times over the past two decades — including in December, 1996, December, 1998, and September, 2002.

Firefighters and other emergency personnel try to resuscitate a firefighter as he is being taken to get help at the rear of the building at 528 Magnolia. The two firefighters went missing inside during the blaze.

Six residential units are located adjacent to and behind the Huron Market carryout. The owner, who watched firefighters work to put out the fire, said seven people lived in the units and none were injured. He said he recently spent about $2,500 to fix the plumbing on the residential side after this month’s deep freeze caused problems.
Another apartment building Mr. Abouarab owned caught fire twice within in a six-month period a decade ago. That five-unit complex at 809 North Huron St. — which Mr. Abouarab sold in 2007, according to county records — was on fire in August, 2002, and again in January, 2003.


thanks Chris

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