Excerpts from woodtv.com:

Comstock Township (MI) Fire Chief Edward Switalski was hit and killed by a passing vehicle while responding to an unknown accident on eastbound I-94, Kalamazoo County authorities say.

Oshtemo Township Fire Department Chief Mark Barnes said it all started with the Comstock Township Department of Fire & Rescue looking for two crashes on eastbound I-94 near mile marker 81 around 10:30 p.m., after heavy rains. When they arrived, they found an empty vehicle and no injuries to report.

The Kalamazoo County Sheriff’s Office said as fire crews were getting ready to leave the scene, a passing vehicle lost control and hit Switalski, who was standing near the rear of his rescue vehicle.

Crews at the scene tried to revive Switalski, but were unsuccessful. He died at the scene.

The driver of the at-fault vehicle was taken to Borgess Methodist Hospital with injuries from the crash. 

After serving more 30 years at Pleasantview Fire District in Illinois, Switalski moved to West Michigan in 2013 to be closer to his daughters, who were attending Western Michigan University.

He was sworn in on July 1, 2013, replacing a fire chief who had been with the department for more than 40 years.

Messages of sympathy filtered in fast Thursday morning.

thanks Keith

Chief Ed Switalski retired after 34 years on Pleasantview Fire District in 2013 and was 55 years old.

From Art Zern:

Ed was a wonderful guy, firefighter, instructor and a true character.  Ed retired as a Battalion Chief from the Pleasantview Fire District (after 24 years) about 4 years ago taking a job as Fire Chief Comstock Township Dept. of Fire and Rescue (Michigan).  I’m sure many of your readers will have known Ed or taken a class he taught at SUFD, NIPSTA or from the Illinois Fire Chiefs.  Most sincere condolences to Ed’s wife Holly and his daughters Emily and Allison.

Art Zern

Excerpts from firefightersclosecalls.com:

It is with a very heavy heart that we inform you that the Fire Service profession & FireFighterCloseCalls/The Secret List has lost a friend in the Line of Duty.

At approximately 2230 hours last night (Wednesday) Comstock Township (Kalamazoo County) Fire Chief Ed Switalski was struck and killed in the Line of Duty while he worked at a crash scene on I-94. Chief Switalski was standing at the rear of his command vehicle returning equipment to service when another vehicle entered the scene striking the Chief and the rear of his vehicle.

Comstock firefighters and the entire EMS system did their very best to save his life but his injures were just too severe to survive. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Comstock Fire had followed all best practices yet the driver somehow made it around a blocking engine.

It should be noted that this “stretch” of I-94 has a long history of tragic outcomes.

While you will read more in the coming days, Chief Switalski, was a true hero and beloved friend to the Illinois, Michigan, and US fire service. Among many accomplishments, he received the medal of valor for his actions involving the Line of Duty death of a firefighter as a member of the Pleasantview FPD, IL in 1989.

Our sincere condolences to all involved and especially his wife Holly and his daughters Emily and Allison along with the Comstock firefighters.