John P Whelan, III, Engineer

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On June 28, 2015, Engineer Whelan was operating on the scene of a possible structure fire. A dumpster burned alongside of a metal warehouse and Whelan’s ladder crew was on the roof checking for extension. As he walked on the roof, Engineer Whelan fell through a skylight. He received serious injuries including open bone fractures and a dislocated elbow.

Engineer Whelan was hospitalized and released to recuperate at home after several weeks of treatment. On the evening of July 15, 2015, Engineer Whelan was at home and began to complain of shortness of breath and chest pains. He was transported to the hospital but became unresponsive while in the ambulance. He was pronounced dead at the hospital at 2030hrs.

Engineer Whelan died as a result of complications from the injuries received on June 28th.

Incident Location: 3860 Blake Street (U.S. National Grid: 13S EE 0239 0239)

Department information

Denver Fire Department
745 W. Colfax AVE
U.S. National Grid: 13S ED 0022 9894
Denver, Colorado 80204-2612

Chief: Eric Tade

John P Whelan, III 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: 46
Rank: Engineer
Classification: Career
Incident date: June 28, 2015 21:53
Date of death: July 15, 2015
Cause of death: Fall
Nature of death: Trauma
Activity type: Ventilation
Emergency duty: Yes
Duty type: On-Scene Fire
Fixed property use: Vacant Property