Houston Fire Cadet Collapses During Training

The sudden death of a Houston Fire Department cadet has stunned fellow firefighters.

Cohnway M. Johnson, 26, died Tuesday of an unknown malady, several days after he collapsed at the Houston training academy.

Johnson was on vacation or leave from the Oak Hill Fire Department while he was at the academy, said Assistant Chief Jeffrey Wittig.

He collapsed at the water cooler after finishing first in a four-mile run, Wittig said.

Wittig and other members of the Oak Hill department visited Johnson in the hospital on May 1. "He didn't want to be there. He was in good spirits. He was worried about not finishing (the academy)," the assistant chief said in a telephone interview Thursday.

His condition suddenly deteroriated, and he died on Tuesday.

"We just never expected it considering the excellent shape he was in," Wittig said."We consider him our firefighter..."

Fire crews in Oak Hill where Johnson was employed for three years have participated in planning his funeral.

"Johnson was enrolled in Houston Fire Department's "Certified Firefighter/EMT Fast Track" Academy Class which is made up of members who are Texas certified firefighters and have a Texas Department of State Health Services EMT Basic or Higher," the USFA reported late Wednesday.

Johnson's death comes less than a month since Houston lost two other firefighters.

Funeral Services

Visitation will be held from 6-8 p.m., Friday, May 8 at Cook-Walden Chapel in Pflugerville, Texas.

Funeral services will be held at 4 p.m. Saturday at the chapel.

Due to the location, there will be no procession of fire apparatus.