Maryland Firefighter/EMT Dies in Crash

A Maryland firefighter/EMT died in the line of duty Monday morning when he crashed while responding in his private vehicle to the scene of a prior motor vehicle accident, officials said.

Justin Mangum, 20, joined the Mechanicsville Volunteer Fire Department in March 2001 and the Mechanicsville Rescue Squad in 1999, said Fire Chief John B. Raley. Mangum was responding as a member of the rescue squad when he was involved in a single-vehicle accident at about 4:30 a.m. and was killed on impact.

Raley described the young firefighter as very energetic, outgoing and respectful.

"If you gave him a job, he did it, and never asked any questions," the chief said. "He was a team player, and an outstanding individual."

Raley said Mangum was responding to the scene about 4:15 a.m. when the accident occurred.

Raley said firefighters heard about Mangum's accident at about 4:45 a.m. as they finished clearing the scene of the original accident. An ambulance arrived at the scene first and medical workers told arriving firefighters that Mangum was deceased. After one of the firefighters concurred, they called a neighboring fire department to take handle the extrication.

"This is our first line of duty death," the chief said. "We have responded to our own members but nothing of this magnitude. They've never died."

"We're gonna miss him," the chief said.

Mangum got involved in the fire service because of his father, who spent 18 years as a firefighter, Raley said, and he has a brother in the same fire department. Raley said Mangum worked as a DJ, installed lawn sprinklers, and served as a cheerleading coach for a local high school and a private company. He was also training to become a paramedic.

Viewing Information:
Thursday December 19, 2002 @ Mechanicsville V.F.D. Station-2
1400-1600 and 1800-2000 hrs
Firemans Prayers at 2000 hrs

Funeral Information
Friday December 20,2002 at Mechanicsville V.F.D. Station-2
at 1000 hrs.
Burial at Trinity Memorial Gardens in Waldorf.