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Fallen Brothers» Gary Staley

Line of Duty Death      Our condolences to the Staley family and the Porter Volunteer Fire Department of Texas. FireFighter Gary Staley, 33, an 18 month veteran of the Porter Volunteer Fire Department died Sunday January 19, 2003. Gary was operating at the scene of an auto repair shop structure fire in Montgomery County when an apparent flashover occurred. Three of his crew members on a hand line with him were able to find their way out of the building after exit air horns were sounded. Juan Chapa of the Porter Volunteer Fire Department and Allen Haynes of the New Caney Fire Department received second and third degree burns on the head, arms, and torso and were transported a special burn unit at Memorial Hermann Hospital in Houston. A third firefighter was treated for burns to his hands and arms at the scene.

     Porter Volunteer Fire Department firefighters were familiar with the auto repair shop which was only six blocks from their fire station. Crews responded to building reporting heavy fire and smoke showing in the rear of the 100x100 building. Gary's crew had advanced an 1-3/4" line through the showroom and just into the shop area when the flashover occurred. The two firefighters who were transported were on fire as they exited the building and had to be extinguished with a hand line. Gary was apparently unable to find his way out and was found in an office. Mutual aid comapanies were sent from departments throughout southern Montgomery County as well as the Houston Fire Department. Investigators believe that shellac fumes may have started the blaze.

     Gary responded to more than 304 calls with the Porter Volunteer Fire Department in 2002 which put him in the 250 club for firefighters who have responded to more than 250 calls per year and was named rookie of the year for 2002. When he wasn't responding he was an accountant at Anadarko Petroleum.

     Visitation will be held for Gary on Thursday January 23, 2003 6-9PM at Rosewood Funeral Home and cemetery. A funeral will be held for Gary on Friday January 24, 2003 10AM at Forest Cove Baptist Church. Gary leaves behind his eight year old daughter Courtney. The family has asked that in lieu of flowers donations can be made to:

 

Gary Staley Memorial Fund
Southwest Bank of Texas
23741 Highway 59 Suite 2
Porter, TX 77365
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