ST. LOUIS — A firefighter has died in the line of duty following a fire that happened on July 5th. The St. Louis Fire Department says that Captain John Kemper was injured while battling a structure fire in the 3600 block of Pennsylvania. Kemper was one of four firefighters taken to the hospital during the July 4th holiday. The fire was likely sparked by fireworks during celebrations.
Wednesday, Captain John Kemper died from the injuries he sustained in the July 5th fire.
Kemper joined the St. Louis Fire Department on June 1, 1993. He was promoted to captain on May 14, 2008. Funeral arrangements will be announced soon.
St. Louis Fire Chief says they knew they were going to be busy for the 4th of July celebrations as fire fighters responded to 335 calls and of those calls 13 building fires.
"We ran 335 calls the period starting 0800 July fourth to 0800 July 5 so were we busier, absolutely. So, it was a longer day, it was more intense than what a normal day would be statically, " said Captain Garon Mosby.
Among the most serious, a house fire on Oriole Avenue near Harney Avenue in North St. Louis. The vacant home was fully engulfed in flames when firefighters arrived. The fire spread to the roof of a home next door. Firefighters quickly extinguished it.
Another fire damaged a home at Lotus and Hamilton Avenues. The fire started on the second floor. Luckily the residents got out safe.
One fire fighter suffered heat exhaustion while fighting a fire in the 5100 block of Cates. Another firefighter got thermal burns from the heat of a fire in the 4100 block of Oregon.
The fire chief encourages residents to keep in mind the dangers of fireworks and a reminder they are illegal in St Louis City.