N.J. community mourns death of 32-year-old fire chief

Tim Pfleger was injured in an accident while traveling from a fire academy in July

Duty Death: Timothy R. Pfleger - [Keyport, New Jersey]

Jackie Roman

KEYPORT, N.J. — The bayshore community of Keyport is mourning the death of its 32-year-old fire chief, Tim Pfleger, who officials said died this weekend after he was hurt in an accident while traveling from an area fire academy in July.

His death was reported on Saturday by the Keyport Fire Department and Keyport Fire Patrol.

“Chief Pfleger was an amazing firefighter, outstanding chief and above all a genuine loving friend. Anyone who had the honor of meeting him knows that his friendship will always be missed,” said Alexander Mabe, vice president of the Keyport Fire Department, in a statement posted to the Keyport Fire Patrol Facebook page.

“Tim was a true leader to the members of Keyport Fire Patrol and was always there to help with anything he could. He will truly be missed and our family will forever mourn his loss,” Mabe said.

Pfleger joined the Keyport Fire Department as a cadet in 2007 and joined the Keyport Fire Patrol the following year, where he served the ranks of lieutenant and captain, according to a statement posted on the Keyport Fire Department Facebook page. In 2019, Pfleger was elected as the third assistant chief of the department and from there, he served two more years as an assistant chief until he was elected to chief in 2022, the department said.

As chief, Pfleger was in charge of overseeing all five firehouses within the Keyport Fire Department.

Following Pfleger’s accident coming from the fire academy in July, the Monmouth County town of Keyport rallied around their injured fire chief.

When Pfleger couldn’t attend the annual Keyport Fireman’s Fair this summer, the fire department created a Facebook page called “Fair Photos for Chief Pfleger,” where residents could post photos of the festivities, “to make sure he is still a part of the fair.”

Pfleger is survived by his parents and sister.

“We ask that everyone please keep the Pfleger family in your hearts and prayers,” Mabe said. The department described his death as happening in the line of duty, but authorities did not immediately release more information.

In honor and memory of Pfleger, the waterfront gazebo lights in Keyport have been lit up red. Residents are asked to consider turning their porch lights red or hanging a red ribbon from their doors as a way of showing support for the Pfleger family and fellow fire department members.


Jackie Roman may be reached at jroman@njadvancemedia.com.

©2022 Advance Local Media LLC.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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