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Ohio death touches city department

Deceased Toledo firefighter had brother on local force

S. Machcinski

An Ohio firefighter who died Sunday while battling a blaze at an apartment complex in Toledo was the brother of a Fort Wayne firefighter.

Toledo firefighters Stephen Machcinski, 42, and James Dickman, 31, were killed while fighting the fire in the six-unit building, Toledo Fire Department Chief Luis Santiago said at a news conference Sunday.

Machcinski is the younger brother of Fort Wayne firefighter Richard Machcinski, according to a Fort Wayne Fire Department statement.

Fort Wayne firefighters have been in touch with Machcinski to extend their sympathies and offer support. Members of Fort Wayne Fire IAFF Local 124 are also working to coordinate efforts with off duty personnel to have a Fort Wayne Fire Department presence in Toledo during during the funeral, according to the statement.

Machcinski was a 16-year veteran of the force, while Dickman had been on the job for only six months.

The firefighters were attacking the blaze when they became disoriented and suffered injuries inside the building. Fellow firefighters made “valiant efforts” to remove them and begin lifesaving measures, Santiago said.

Six adults and two children from the apartment complex and a house next door were placed in overnight shelters by the Red Cross of Northwest Ohio.

The firefighters were placed on stretchers and taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, where a large crowd from the Toledo Fire Department gathered.

Toledo Mayor D. Michael Collins asked that flags be flown at half-staff throughout the city on Monday.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

vsade@jg.net

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