Arkansas Firefighters Mourn for S.C. Loss - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Jonesboro, AR -- Marsha Mays Reporting

Arkansas Firefighters Mourn for S.C. Loss

JONESBORO, AR -- Just 3 days ago, 9 firefighters were killed while fighting a fire at a furniture store in Charleston, South Carolina. It's our nation's deadliest firefighting tragedy since 9-11.

Here in Arkansas, firefighters at the annual Arkansas Professional Firefighters Convention in Jonesboro are full of questions as to how this could've happened.

"We don't know what caused it yet. We only know what news reports have made available and we will wait till the investigation is done by the Fire Marshalls office and I'm sure the insurance offices will do an investigation on it and see if there is any way we can learn from this tragedy," says Peter Reagan, the president of the Arkansas Professional Firefighters Convention.

The fire ignited around 7:00 Monday night. Two employees at the Sofa Super Store in Charleston were rescued from the fire which apparently started outside in a trash bin.

"Our main goal when you're fighting fires is rescuing those that are trapped. Once you have that accomplished, we don't generally worry about the structure," says Reagan.

But regardless, the firefighters here believe those 9 firefighters were inside the burning building for a reason and they now mourn the loss of their brothers.

"99 percent of firefighters are not doing their jobs because of the pay. They're doing it because they love helping other people, especially those who are in need," says Reagan.

"Any city anywhere you can walk in and say I work at this fire department in this town and it's like they've known you their whole life so yes, it does strengthen the brotherhood. The brotherhood is pretty strong as is but it just makes it even tighter," says Jonesboro Firefighter Paul Pittman.

A bus is leaving out Friday morning from Little Rock carrying many Arkansas Firefighters. They are traveling to South Carolina for the memorial services and to pay their respects to their fellow firefighters.  

  • Region 8 News</span><a class="customMoreLink" href="/Global/category.asp?C=4391" target="_top">More >></a>Region 8 NewsMore>>

  • Gas station manager arrested, accused of selling drugs at store

    Gas station manager arrested, accused of selling drugs at store

    Thursday, March 23 2017 11:56 PM EDT2017-03-24 03:56:38 GMT
    Shane Allen Nelson (Source: Craighead Co. Sheriff's Office)Shane Allen Nelson (Source: Craighead Co. Sheriff's Office)

    The manager of a Craighead County gas station was arrested Wednesday afternoon for allegedly selling drugs at the store. 

    The manager of a Craighead County gas station was arrested Wednesday afternoon for allegedly selling drugs at the store. 

  • Second meeting scheduled for Jonesboro walk/bike trails

    Second meeting scheduled for Jonesboro walk/bike trails

    Monday, March 20 2017 11:45 PM EDT2017-03-21 03:45:52 GMT
    Thursday, March 23 2017 11:55 PM EDT2017-03-24 03:55:42 GMT
    (Source: KAIT)(Source: KAIT)

    Six potential pedestrian and bicycle trail projects for Jonesboro were discussed in a meeting Thursday night to give Jonesboro residents input on the project. The meeting took place in the city council chambers.

    Six potential pedestrian and bicycle trail projects for Jonesboro were discussed in a meeting Thursday night to give Jonesboro residents input on the project. The meeting took place in the city council chambers.

  • Man faces commercial burglary, theft charges

    Man faces commercial burglary, theft charges

    Thursday, March 23 2017 10:12 PM EDT2017-03-24 02:12:57 GMT
    Thursday, March 23 2017 11:47 PM EDT2017-03-24 03:47:37 GMT
    Courtley Lloyd Johnson (Source: Craighead Co. Sheriff's Office and probable cause affidavit)Courtley Lloyd Johnson (Source: Craighead Co. Sheriff's Office and probable cause affidavit)

    The theft of over $5,200 worth of materials from a company has a Craighead County man facing commercial burglary and theft charges, authorities said Thursday. 

    The theft of over $5,200 worth of materials from a company has a Craighead County man facing commercial burglary and theft charges, authorities said Thursday. 

Powered by Frankly