Mo. Firefighter Succumbs to Burn Injuries

The Marshfield (Mo.) firefighter critically burned in a July 13 fire, died Saturday morning.

According to television KOLR10 News, Marshfield Fire Department Lt. Matthew Blankenship died at about 4:35 a.m. in the hospital where he was taken after he and other firefighters were trapped in a home while fighting a fire in nearby Niangua.

News reports at the time said Blankenship, 38, was burned over 75 percent of his body in a flashover and had been in a medically induced coma at Mercy Burn Unit in Springfield, since he suffered the injuries.

According to news reports, a fire started in the basement of a two-story home at 577 Hospitality Road. As firefighter were battling the blaze, conditions deteriorated trapping three firefighters, forcing them to call a MAYDAY.

The two others, who were not identified, were treated at a local hospital and released, Blankenship suffered injuries that would ultimately prove fatal that night. The cause of the fire was said to be accidental and the residents were not home when the fire broke out.

The fallen firefighter had served with the Marshfield Fire Department for four years, according to news reports.

According to the News-Leader, a local newspaper, Blankenship is the first line of duty death in Marshfield fire department’s history.

He was a mechanic for the Peterbilt dealership in Springfield, Mo., and leaves a wife and three children.

Funeral services for Blankenship had not been released early Saturday afternoon. News will provide additional information as it becomes available.