Illinois Firefighter Struck, Killed by Apparatus at Scene

Dec. 03--BARTELSO, Ill. -- The Clinton County sheriff's office is investigating the death of a firefighter who was struck and killed Sunday night by a fire truck as the crew arrived at the scene of a house fire.

Timothy P. Jansen, 45. Jansen was a volunteer firefighter for the Santa Fe Volunteer Fire Protection District in Bartelso.

At about 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Jansen was on the first pumper truck to arrive at a burning cottage in the 9600 block of River Road. He was standing outside the truck when he was hit, said Jeff Kampwerth, fire chief of the Germantown fire protecting district. Jansen was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital in Breese, where he died.

Kampwerth was acting as spokesman Monday morning for the Bartelso firefighters who were mourning their friend's death.

"He was just one of the nice guys, upbeat, always willing to do anything for you," Kampwerth said of Jansen.

Bartelso is a village of nearly 600 residents in Clinton County, about 50 miles east of St. Louis.

About 30 firefighters from two districts were at the scene of the fire. The building on fire was a cottage. No one was inside at the time. The building was destroyed by flames, and the Illinois state fire marshal's office is investigating the cause of the fire. No other injuries were reported.

After Jansen's death, a critical-incident stress debriefing team from a local hospital came to the local firehouse and talked with the firefighters and their wives, Kampwerth said.

Jansen was married and had two daughters, in eighth and first grades. He was a 15-year veteran of the district. He owned and operated MacJenna's, a restaurant across the street from the firehouse. He named the restaurant after his daughters, said Jansen's youngest brother, Joe Jansen.

Joe Jansen said his brother was one of six siblings, born and raised in Bartelso. Tim Jansen worked long hours at the restaurant and loved being part of the fire district. He joined the district after many of his friends did, Joe Jansen said.

Tim Jansen was generous, his brother said. At his restaurant, he hired a young man in town who was disabled and, because the young man didn't have a drivers license, Tim Jansen would take him to Walmart every other weekend or so to buy his essentials.

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