WORCESTER - Early yesterday morning, a home in Worcester was taken over by flames and when the Worcester fire department responded to the scene they ended up trapped on the third floor during the process of helping evacuate the occupants of the building while attempting to put the fire out.
One lieutenant in the Worcester fire department, Jason Menard, was trapped on the third floor with two other firefighters. According to Worcester fire chief Michael Lavoie, Lt. Menard aided one firefighter in getting to the building's staircase to exit and he saved another firefighter by helping him escape through the window.
Tragically, Lt. Menard himself was unable to escape and despite efforts to save him, he was pronounced dead at a nearby hospital, as reported by WCVB.
According to the reports of the fire, which came in at one o'clock in the morning, residents, including a baby, were trapped inside and the extreme conditions of cold and wind made it difficult for the firefighters to escape after saving the occupants.
The conditions were impossibly difficult to fight a fire under, but the department answered the call nonetheless. Lt. Menard's actions, as a result of this, can only be described as heroic.
Working with the Worcester fire department since 2010, Lt. Menard was also a married father of three children. At 39 years old, what happened to him is an undeniable tragedy and our hearts go out to his family and to the community.
Tragically, it almost feels as if the deaths of firefighters has become commonplace in Worcester in the past couple of decades.
According to Patch.com, Lt. Menard became the ninth firefighter from Worcester to die in the past twenty years. It remains terrible every time and hopefully some sort of improvements will be made to conditions and procedures if it is at all possible to curb this from happening again.
For now, the best we can do is keep the Menard family in our thoughts during this season.
Image Via Wikimedia Commons