LODD: Ky. acting fire chief dies due to COVID-19
Zoneton Fire District Maj. Garry Key had served as acting chief since the death of Chief Rob Orkies, also from COVID-19 complications
Duty Death: Garry Key - [Shepherdsville, Kentucky]
End of Service: 02/13/2021
By Laura French
ZONETON, Ky. — An acting Kentucky fire chief has died due to COVID-19, two months after his predecessor also died from COVID-19 complications.
Zoneton Fire District Acting Chief Maj. Garry Key, 70, died Saturday following a month-long battle with the virus, according to WHAS 11. Key contracted COVID-19 while on-duty attending mandated fire department meetings and other fire department functions, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.
Key had served as acting chief since the death of Chief Rob Orkies in December. Orkies died from COVID-19 complications after battling both the virus and cancer.
"Garry was highly respected by all who knew him and all of us are deeply saddened by his loss," said current Zoneton Acting Fire Chief Kevin Moulton. "This is a difficult time for the entire fire department."
Key served for nearly 30 years in the U.S. Army and served a tour of duty in Vietnam from 1970 to 1971, according to the fire department. He joined the Zoneton Fire Protection District in 1984 and was the community's longest-serving volunteer firefighter. He also served for 10 years with the Bullitt County Sheriff's Office as a reserve deputy and later as a court security officer, retiring from the sheriff's department in 2020.
Key is survived by his wife of 50 years, a son and a daughter, six grandchildren and two siblings. Key's son is also a Zoneton firefighter, officials said.