MARION (CBS) – A 45-year veteran of the Marion Fire Department died after battling a fire Tuesday. Firefighter Thomas Nye, 72, served as a call firefighter for Marion since 1974.

Nye helped extinguish a chimney fire on Point Road Tuesday afternoon and then returned home. He collapsed early Wednesday morning after suffering what is believed to be a cardiac incident. He was pronounced dead at Tobey Hospital.

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Marion Firefighter Thomas Nye (courtesy photo)

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Fire Chief Brian Jackvony said “Nye was a proud firefighter who served our community with distinction.”

Firefighter Nye was married for 53 years, had two adult sons, five grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

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He was a Vietnam veteran and worked as an auto mechanic. A funeral with full fire department and military honors is anticipated.