Fire Deaths Take Toll on Kentucky Firefighters

LUDLOW, Ky. --

Teddy bears and flowers serve as a memorial for twin 4-year-old girls who died in a fire in Ludlow, Ky. And their memory weighs heavy on the firefighters who couldn’t save them.

Ludlow Fire Chief Matt Chastain was among the first to arrive at the fire that killed Madison and McKenzie Spencer, and their great-grandmother, Nancy "Carol" Spencer.

"I don't believe it was survivable. They were gone before we got there," Chastain said.

Chastain is one of 35 who volunteer their time to serve the Ludlow Fire Department. The average age of a Ludlow firefighter is 24.

"We have a lot of young firefighters," Chastain said. "When you deal with a fatality, you never know when it's bothering them."

Mental health specialists, spiritual leaders and experience firefighters had a debriefing after the fire to talk about what happened and the memories that will stay with these firefighters.

"They'll help them get through some things. We have a lot of young fathers and mother on the department. They need the help and don't recognize it," Chastain said.

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