North Carolina Firefighter Killed in Crash

He was following in his father's boot steps as a volunteer.


CONCORD, N.C. -- The flag at the Cold Water Fire & Rescue is at half mast here in honor of a young firefighter killed while responding to an incident Monday.

Firefighter James Earl Arthur, 19, was responding to a wreck when he lost control of his truck. The vehicle veered off the road and rolled, ejecting Arthur who was not wearing a seat belt.

Arthur joined the fire department several years ago as a junior member. His father also volunteers at Cold Water, said Capt. Brian McDonald.

"He was head over heels for the fire department," McDonald said, adding that the young firefighter was energetic and dependable.

Arthur was leaving work at a textile factory when he heard his department dispatched for a wreck. "People saw him turn on his lights. They knew he was headed to the call," McDonald said.

But, he never made it.

Since he wrecked in a nearby jurisdiction, his fellow firefighters were spared from having to respond to his crash.

McDonald said it's been a rough day in Concord. But, the department has received calls from numerous firefighters offering support and words of comfort.

A makeshift memorial with Arthur's turnout gear has been established at the base of the flagpole in front of the station. The building and apparatus have been draped with black cloths.

Funeral Information

Visitation will be held from 5-8:30 p.m. Friday at Wilkinson Funeral Home, Concord. Funeral services with full fire department honors will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday at Gilead Church.

Fire departments planning to send personnel or apparatus should contact the Cold Water Fire Department at 704-782-2514.