Texas Officials Say Two Firefighters Recovering From Fire That Kills Colleagues

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

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UPDATE: Saturday, February 16, 2013

A Central Texas fire chief says doctors are optimistic that two firefighters will recover from serious burns suffered in a blaze that killed two colleagues.

Bryan Fire Chief Randy McGregor thanked everyone Sunday for their prayers for the families of the firefighters who died and for the men who were injured.

A community vigil was scheduled Sunday night at a high school stadium in Bryan, about 90 miles northwest of Houston.

The chief declined to speculate on what started Friday night's fire at an unoccupied Knights of Columbus Hall, which claimed the lives of Lt. Eric Wallace and Lt. Gregory Pickard.

Firefighters Ricky Mantey Jr. and Mitchel Moran are hospitalized in serious but stable condition.

McGregor says the state fire marshals' investigation could take six months.



Saturday, February 16, 2013

Two Texas fire lieutenants have died of burns after battling a lodge hall fire.

A spokeswoman for the Central Texas city of Bryan confirmed the deaths of 54-year-old Greg Pickard and 36-year-old Eric Wallace. Mary Lynne Stratta says Pickard died Saturday in a Galveston hospital and Wallace at the scene.

Stratta says the firefighters entered the burning Knights of Columbus hall in Bryan about midnight Friday, but didn't emerge when ordered to evacuate.

She says two firefighters taken to the Galveston hospital for burns, Ricky Mantey Jr. and Mitchel Moran, are both in serious but stable condition.

Bryan is 90 miles northwest of Houston.

The Texas State Fire Marshal's office is investigating the cause of the fire.

City officials say nothing was occurring at the hall at the time.


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