Firefighter dies months after being struck by tree

Firefighter dies months after being struck by tree

17 February 2011

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USA — A wildland firefighter has died from injuries he received last September while working to douse a blaze in western Kentucky.

Donald S. Lam died Thursday. The 58-year-old had served for nearly 12 years as a wildland firefighter for the Kentucky Division of Forestry.

Kentucky Forestry Chief Leah MacSwords called Lam’s death “a tremendous loss to our organization.”

MacSwords said Lam had been hospitalized in critical condition since the Sept. 7 accident in Livingston County. He was clearing a fire break when a burning tree truck rolled off a bluff and struck him from behind. The blow left Lam unconscious with serious injuries, including second-degree burns.

The fire had spread from a brush pile that a construction company had set ablaze. MacSwords said charges are pending.

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