An Independence firefighter out on a call died Thursday afternoon.
According to the city, crews had responded to a residential fire about 1 p.m., and the firefighter said he was becoming short of breath and stayed in the vehicle while others handled the fire. Someone stayed with him.
Firefighters then rushed him to Centerpoint Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead. The city has not released the name of the firefighter nor the station he worked at, pending family notification.
The fire at the 9600 block of 33rd Street South, near the split between Blue Ridge Cutoff and Blue Ridge Boulevard on the city’s west edge, was determined to be an illegal open burn. Crews from stations 2, 3, 4 and 5 responded to the fire.