LODD: Ohio chief dies after falling ill during structure fire

South Richland Fire Chief Hal Matthew Hanenkrath experienced chest pains while at a fire

Duty Death: Hal Matthew Hanenkrath - [Defiance, Ohio]

End of Service: 06/27/2023

By Bill Carey 

DEFIANCE, Ohio — The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) announced the on-duty death of Chief Hal Matthew Hanenkrath of the South Richland Fire Department on June 27. 

Chief Hanenkrath was at the scene of a residential fire when he started experiencing shortness of breath and chest pains, the USFA reported. He was immediately treated at the scene and was then rushed to the local hospital where he passed away a short time later from a pulmonary embolism.  

Hanenkrath was involved in much of public service, WTOL reported. He was also the assistant chief for Highland Township Volunteer Fire Department and the 911 Director for Defiance County Sheriff's Office.


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