LODD: Iowa fire chief dies while responding to blaze

Earling Fire and Rescue Department Chief Tom Henrich fell ill while on the scene of a combine fire

Duty Death: Tom Henrich - [Earling, Iowa]


EARLING, Iowa — A fire chief died Saturday while on the scene of a blaze.

KETV reported that Earling Fire and Rescue Department Chief Tom Henrich was responding to a combine fire when he fell ill and died.

Henrich, a 30-year veteran of the fire service, was remembered by family and colleagues as a dedicated leader.

"The fire department was Tom's life," Harlan Fire Department Chief Roger Bissen said. "He was very strong in training and leadership of their department."

Bissen, who often worked alongside Henrich, said his colleagues called him “doc” due to his strong EMS skills.

"Tom was extremely dedicated and very proud of his fire department and the people on there, the training they do and the responses they made," Atlantic Volunteer Fire Chief Mark McNees said.

Firefighters and fire trucks from several different departments honored Henrich by parking on top of bridges and flashing their lights as the motorcade escorting his body to Ankeny for an autopsy drove by.

"We took vehicles and people up to be on that bridge and to show the family our respects and people going through and for Tom," McNees said. "To be there for them, to know that they have our support -- they're always going to have our support."

 

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