Delaware Grieves Fallen Firefighters

WILMINGTON, Del. (WTXF/AP) – A community is gathering together, holding vigils, after the devastating loss of two Wilmington firefighters. Meanwhile, the Delaware State Fire Marshal is looking for the cause of that devastating fire.

According to a press release from the Wilmington Fire Dept., Lieutenant Christopher Leach and Senior Firefighter Jerry Fickes will be picked up and transported to their respective funeral homes tomorrow at 9 AM from the State Medical Examiner’s Office.
They wrote that all off-duty members are encouraged to come out and line up at 8:30 am  and show support for our fallen brothers. Two small processions will follow carrying each fallen firefighter to their funeral home.

All nine people who were living in the Wilmington rowhouse in the 1900 block of Lakeview Road where a fire broke out before 3am Saturday were able to get out before help arrived.

The first crew to arrive reported heavy fire coming from the rear, so an additional engine was dispatched.

Tragically, the two firefighter victims were working on the first floor when the floor collapsed beneath their feet, trapping them in the basement.

Other firefighters declared a “Mayday” and more help came to help the trapped firefighters. Multiple fire units provided search and rescue for the downed firefighters.

Apparently, they thought children were trapped inside. Both were killed in the line of duty.

Lt. Christopher Leach, 41, was a 14-year veteran.

Senior Firefighter Jerry Fickes, 51, was a 13-year veteran.

Both were fathers and are being remembered as brave men who were devoted to their community. Flags have been lowered throughout the city.

This was the first time in decades that’s Wilmington firefighters were killed in the line of duty.

Two other firefighters were injured. They were in critical but stable condition Saturday evening.

Two more injured firefighters were treated at the hospital and released Saturday afternoon.

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