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Gabriel Garnet Lee

Firefighter

Firefighter Lee's company was dispatched at 1720hrs to a report of a fire in a residence. The first unit on the scene reported a working fire with flames visible from the front of the second floor of a row house. Firefighter Lee was assigned the hook position on Ladder 12. When his unit arrived on the scene, he entered the fire dwelling and advanced to the second floor front room where he began opening walls and ceilings to expose hidden fire. Ladder 12 was released from the incident and returned to quarters at approximately 1746hrs.

After the fire was extinguished and overhaul operations completed, Firefighter Lee and his company returned to quarters and began cleaning equipment and restoring the apparatus to service. While restoring the apparatus, Firefighter Lee began complaining to co-workers about experiencing pain in his left shoulder. He told co-workers that he was going to the gym in the fire station basement to stretch in hope of relieving the pain. Firefighter Lee headed to the basement at approximately 1830hrs.

At approximately 1912hrs, one of Firefighter Lee's co-workers went to the basement to check on him and discovered that he was unconscious and without a pulse. CPR was immediately initiated, oxygen was administered, and a paramedic unit was requested and dispatched via the Philadelphia Fire Department's Fire Communications Center.

While awaiting the arrival of a medic unit, Firefighter Lee was attached to a semi-automated external defibrillator (SAED) while CPR continued. A paramedic unit arrived at the fire station within five minutes and Firefighter Lee was transported to a nearby hospital, where he received additional emergency medical treatment until he was eventually pronounced dead at approximately 1930hrs. His death was caused by a heart attack.

Incident Location: Ladder Company 12, 1325 W. Cambria St. in North Philadelphia (U.S. National Grid: 18S VK 8698 2743)

photo of the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial
Gabriel Garnet Lee was included in the USFA’s annual report Firefighter Fatalities in the United States.

Department information

Philadelphia Fire Department
240 Spring Garden ST, Fire Administration Building
U.S. National Grid: 18S VK 8778 2339
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19123

Chief: Fire Commissioner Adam K. Thiel

Age: 42
Rank: Firefighter
Classification: Career
Incident date: July 23, 2016 19:11
Date of death: July 23, 2016
Cause of death: Stress/Overexertion
Nature of death: Heart Attack
Activity type: Not On Scene
Emergency duty: No
Duty type: Other On-Duty
Fixed property use: Residential

Last updated: August 30, 2017

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Honoring line-of-duty deaths in 2019