Matthew Rena Renaud

Houston Fire Department units were dispatched to a report of a fire in a motel. Captain Renaud and Engineer Operator Bebee were on the first engine to arrive at the scene. Firefighters found a working fire with heavy smoke showing and advanced a 2-1/2 inch handline into the structure. Firefighters opened the ceiling as they advanced and found fire in the space above. Firefighters were ordered to withdraw from the structure while a water supply was secured.

Once a water supply was established, firefighters advanced into the structure. Firefighters Garner and Sullivan, from the second engine to arrive on-scene, backed up other firefighters. As firefighters advanced, a structural collapse occurred and trapped a number of firefighters. Four firefighters were killed as a result of the collapse and over a dozen were injured, including a Captain received severe injuries.

Autopsy examinations revealed the firefighters died from thermal injuries, smoke inhalation, and compressional asphyxia.

The Texas State Fire Marshal’s Office has prepared a comprehensive report on this incident. The report is available at

Incident Location: 6855 Southwest Fwy, Houston, TX 77074 USNG: 15R TN 5780 8940

Department Information

Houston Fire Department
600 Jefferson, 7th FL
USNG: 15R TN 7054 9373
Houston, Texas 77002

Chief: Terry Garrison

Matthew Rena Renaud was honored on the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Emmitsburg, Maryland and was included in the USFA’s annual report Firefighter Fatalities in the United States.
Age: 35 
Rank: Captain/EMT 
Classification: Career 
Incident Date: May 31, 2013 12:07
Date of Death: May 31, 2013 
Cause of Death: Caught or Trapped 
Nature of Death: Asphyxiation 
Activity Type: Advance Hose Lines/Fire Attack (includes Wildland) 
Emergency Duty: Yes
Duty Type: On-Scene Fire 
Fixed Property Use: Residential