WORCESTER (CBS) – The City of Worcester is mourning the line of duty death of Lt. Jason Menard, a tragedy authorities say they are far too familiar with.
Menard’s death marked the 10th time a firefighter has died in the line of duty since 1999.
“The circumstances have become all too familiar to us. A cold night in one of our 3-decker neighborhoods. A fire. And the death of one of our Worcester’s bravest,” said Worcester Mayor Joseph Petty.
Six firefighters, dubbed the “Worcester 6,” died while fighting the Cold Storage fire that was later determined to be started by two homeless people.
Lt. Thomas Spencer, Lt. Timothy Jackson Sr., Lt. James Lyons III, and firefighters Jeremiah Lucey, Paul Brotherton and Joseph McGuirk died after becoming trapped in the fire on December 3, 1999.
In December 2011, Firefighter Jon Davies died after getting trapped in a burning home.
Worcester Firefighter Chris Roy died in December 2018 during an early morning fire on Lowell Street.
This summer, Lt. John Kennedy died several days after fighting a fire.
Just hours before Menard was killed while helping save members of his unit, it was announced that the Worcester Red Sox will retire the uniform No. 6 to commemorate the Worcester 6. The club also announced there will be a permanent display at Polar Park for the firefighters.
“It was just yesterday afternoon that we were announcing memorial tributes coming this December in honor of the Worcester 6, Firefighter Jon Davies and Firefighter Chris Roy,” City Manager Edward Augustus said after Menard’s death. “To have this cruel loss early this morning is almost more than one city can bear.”