Texas Chief Dies of Injuries from Fire

Chief Robert Knight died Saturday night at a hospital in Tyler, where he was taken after he was injured earlier in the collapse of a wall.


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TEAGUE, Texas --

A Central Texas town on Monday mourned the loss of its fire chief, who died while doing his job.

NBC 5 News reported that Teague Fire Department Chief Robert Knight died trying to save a downtown business.

Knight died while fighting a fire at an upholstery business and body shop. Knight was one of the first firefighters on the scene.

"He went down right in here -- that's where the wall went down," said Cleo McDonald, who owned the business. "They had to dig him out of that."

McDonald was watching from across the street.

"He was trying to get that door open and get some water in there," McDonald said. "When the wall started falling, we started hollering, 'The wall is falling!' But there was nothing we could do."

The fire marshal said Knight succumbed from massive internal injuries.

"He was just a prince of a fellow," said one woman. "I've known him all his life since he was a little boy. And the whole community loved him very, very much."

Knight was not only volunteer fire chief, he was also a volunteer paramedic, who dedicated his life to helping others. At the volunteer fire station he helped build, flowers now replace the uniform in his locker.

"He was one of the best Teague ever put forth," one woman said. "It's just so tragic. He loved being a fireman too."

The cause of Saturday's fire was under investigation.

Funeral Information

Visitation is Tuesday at Bowers Funeral Home in Teague.

Funeral services are at 10 a.m. on Wednesday at the First Baptist Church of Teague.

Burial will follow at Greenwood Cemetery.

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