A Lincoln County firefighter died while exercising while on duty Thursday, marking North Carolina’s fifth firefighter death in less than two months.
Firefighter Joshua Warren reportedly collapsed while working out at East Lincoln Middle School around 11 a.m., WBTV, the Observer’s news partner, reported.
Warren, 34, was rushed to CHS-Lincoln Medical Center, where he later died. He was on duty with the Alexis Fire Department at the time, officials told WBTV.
Five North Carolina firefighters – including three local ones – have died since late April.
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▪ On April 30, Pineville firefighter Richard Sheltra died while fighting a fire on Pineville-Matthews Road.
▪ On May 7, Kenly firefighter John M. Davis, Jr. died while responding to a car crash. Kenly is east of Raleigh.
▪ On May 8, Hugo firefighter Prentice Tyndall complained of a severe headache during a call. Doctors later found a brain bleed, and Tyndall died four days later.
▪ On June 6, Sherrills Ford-Terrell Fire and Rescue captain Bradley Long died while searching for a body in Lake Norman.
All the firefighters were serving with volunteer departments at the time of their death. About 73 percent of North Carolina’s 52,000 firefighters are volunteers, according to the Piedmont North Carolina Firefighter’s Association.
Warren was an active member of East Lincoln Fire Department since 2013, WBTV reported. In addition, he worked part-time as a firefighter for both the Alexis Fire Department and Lucia-Riverbend Fire Department.
“Firefighter Warren was a pivotal part of the departments in which he served,” officials said in a release.
Officials say a full investigation into Warren's death will take place.
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