A Lancaster County volunteer fire chief collapsed at his fire station Tuesday morning and later died after he took part in fighting a house fire.
According to Lancaster County Fire Marshal Stephen Blackwelder, 54-year-old Dennis J. Cauthen was the Fire Chief with the Elgin Volunteer Fire Department with more than 31-years of fire service in Lancaster County.
The volunteer fire department had just returned from fighting a fire in an old mill house at 937 15th Street in the Gooches area. Blackwelder says the fire sparked around 2:45 a.m. Tuesday morning and crews were on scene for nearly three hours.
Blackwelder says that Chief Cauthen began feeling sick when the crews got back to the station and collapsed. His fellow firefighters called for paramedics and began to give him medical attention.
He was rushed to Springs Memorial Hospital where he died around 8 a.m.
Fire crews on scene told WBTV that the heat was so intense, firefighters had to move their trucks further away from the house fire to prevent the trucks from catching fire.
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