IAFF Member Deaths

The IAFF maintains an online searchable database of Line of Duty Deaths. You can search by name, date, district, local or cause to find someone.

2022 Line of Duty Deaths

With deep regret and tremendous sadness, we regret to inform you of the line-of-duty death of Local 452/1805 member Joe Killian on January 13, 2022. Joe served Clark County Fire District 6 for 26 years before retiring in 2018.  Joe was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma – a cancer that is presumptive in the fire service.

Joe was was a respected and well-liked Firefighter/Paramedic. “Joe used to say that being a firefighter was the best job in the world,” says Fire Chief Kristan Maurer. “He loved it because he had the ability to turn a bad thing into a good thing.”

Memorial Information:

 Memorial Service
Tuesday, January 18, 2022
Liberty Bible Church
12401 NE Salmon Creek Ave
Vancouver, Wa

The processional is scheduled to leave Clark Co. Fire District 6 Station 63 at 9:15 a.m.

The public is invited. A large turnout is expected that will likely disrupt traffic in the area so please plan accordingly.

For those who are unable to attend in person, the memorial will also be streamed online. Please keep Joe’s family, friends, and Clark County Fire District 6 in your thoughts and prayers.



2021 Line of Duty Deaths

With deep regret, the WSCFF announces the line-of-duty death of Local 2916 member Cody Traber on August 26, 2021. Cody was operating at the scene of a reported brush fire when he was fatally wounded.  Cody was an 18-year veteran of Spokane Fire District 9. He also served with Stevens County Fire, Cheney Fire and the Department of Natural Resources.  Cody leaves behind his wife and four young children. Please keep Cody and his family in your thoughts and prayers.

Memorial Service details:
Saturday, September 18, 2021
Calvary Spokane
511 Hastings Road
Spokane, WA 99218
1:00 p.m.
Class A (Procession arrives at Calvary Spokane at 11:50 a.m.)

The memorial service will be open to the Traber family, friends, and fire and law enforcement personnel.  It will not be open to the public; however, individuals wanting to pay their responcts may line the processional route that will begin at Fire Station 92, 3801 E. Farwell Road, Mead, WA at approximately 11:30 a.m.  The route will follow Farwell Road and Hastings Road to Calvary Spokane.  Face coverings are required per current mandate.

External fire and law enforcement agencies who wish to attend the service should RSVP by Wednesday, September 15, 2021 at 12:00 noon through this link .

If you wish to make a contribution to support the family, The Local 2916 Benevolent Association has created a special fund, click here to donate.  If you wish to donate by check, checks may be made out and mailed to:

Local 2916 Benevolent Association

Local 2916
PO Box 18336
Spokane, WA 99208

It is with great sadness, the WSCFF announces the line-of-duty death of Local 3390 member Eliza Hoover on July 26, 2021.

Eliza Hoover joined Gig Harbor Fire & Medic One in 2009. She was the department’s first career female fire fighter and paramedic, EMS Provider of the Year, an instructor for the Advanced Cardiac Life Support, and an EMT course coordinator.

However, Eliza was much more than her role as firefighter/paramedic. She loved snowboarding with her son, hiking, and spending time with her German shepherds. She deeply loved her family, treated others with kindness, and was our friend. We will miss her greatly.

Information on memorial services will be provided when available. Please visit https://unionly.io/o/npff/honoring-eliza-hoover to make a donation in her name.. All donations will go directly to honor Eliza’s memory and support her family.

2019-2020 Line of Duty Deaths


With great sadness, IAFF Local 2409 Tumwater Fire Fighters and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the Line-of-Duty Death of retired member Lieutenant Darlene Gail Raffelson on December 17, 2020, after a courageous battle with duty-related cancer.

Darlene began her fire service career in 1978 as a volunteer for the Ocosta Fire Department. She then joined South Beach Ambulance in Westport as a volunteer EMT. In 1990, Darlene was sponsored by the ambulance company to attend the Tacoma Community College paramedic program, where she graduated at the top of her class. Upon graduation she was hired as the first and only paramedic in Westport and surrounding South Beach area.  Darlene was instrumental in creating a program that helped fully staff the South Beach Ambulance Service.

In 1999, Darlene joined Local 2409 Tumwater Fire Fighters as a medic, later promoting to Paramedic Lieutenant, and finished her career as the department’s Training Lieutenant. She worked for 16 years before her medical retirement in 2015.

Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and our brothers and sisters in Local 2409.

Memorial Information:
March 6, 2021
1:00 p.m.
South Beach Christian Center
 1360 WA-105
Grayland, WA 98547

The Fire Service Procession is scheduled to arrive at South Beach Christian Center at 12:00 p.m. Attendance is limited due to COVID restrictions. The service will be live streamed – information about how to view the life-stream will be available right before the service.

With deep regret, IAFF Local I-24 Hanford and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the Line-of-Duty Death of retired member Darrell Dabling.  Darrell passed away on August 13, 2020, after a courageous and lengthy battle with cancer.

Darrell began his career for the Hanford Fire Department in 1973, starting at Hanford Patrol two years before finishing out his remaining 40 years with the Hanford Fire Department. Darrell made many life-long friends while serving as a Firefighter/EMT and was grateful for the unity and camaraderie that he felt amongst his brothers on the Hanford Fire Department. Darrell loved to cook for his fire fighter family and will always be known as a legend not only for his excellent cooking but also for the laughter he brought to the table. Darrell had a natural ability to tell stories and freely shared his many life experiences during his years of service until his retirement in 2015.

Rest easy, Darrell, and know that our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family.

With deep regret, IAFF Local 1296 Kennewick and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the Line-of-Duty Death of retired member Steve Bailie Steve passed away on July 17, 2020 after a courageous and lengthy battle with cancer. Steve’s illness was directly linked to his long fire career and the time he spent at Ground Zero to help with recovery in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks.  

Steve started his career with the Kennewick Fire Department in 1978. After retiring in 2011 and serving his community for 33 years, Steve continued to dedicate his life to the fire service by volunteering at local agencies and staying active as an Incident Management Team member.  

Local 1296 said, “Without a doubt, Steve was one of the hardest working and most committed firefighters our city has ever seen.”The family invites you to sign their online guest book at www.muellersfuneralhomes.com and to view his obitutuary.

With deep regret the WSCFF,  Local 3828, and Cowlitz 2 County Fire & Rescue report the Line-of-Duty-Death of Battalion Chief Mike Zainfeld, a 20-year veteran firefighter. Mike died on Thursday, September 19, 2019.  He leaves behind his wife Kelly, sons Braden and Evan and many colleagues and friends.

A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, October 1, 2019 at 1:00 p.m. at New Life Church, 2441 42nd Ave., Longview, WA 98632.  Procession arrival at the church will be at noon.  Please arrive by 11:30 a.m. if you would like to be a part of the arrival formation.

Cowlitz 2 Fire & Rescue Fire Chief Dave LaFave said, “This hurts.  We will remember Mike, his family, and what they contributed to our organization.  They’re a big part of where we are today.  I believe Mike would want us to move forward together.  We will support each other and his family as we all get through this loss.”

Zainfeld began his career with Cowlitz 2 as a fire cadet in 1994, the first year of the program.  He was hired full time in 2000 after completing paramedic training in Tacoma.  After several years on the job, he was promoted to lieutenant, captain, and battalion chief.  He was active in all hazard deployments, qualified as a division supervisor, and served on assignments in several states.

Mike enjoyed spending time with his family and vacationing with his immediate and extended fire families.  He also appreciated the outdoors, fishing, flying his drone, reading history books, and being with his German Shepherd, Max.

A fund has been established to provide support for the Zainfeld family.  To make a donation, visit the site or make a text donation by calling 360-207-2170 and text “donation”.

With heavy hearts, the WSCFF reports the line-of-duty-death of Lieutenant Philip Oldham, IAFF Local 4258 Grays Harbor #2 on Friday, November 15, 2019 from Leukemia.  He leaves behind his wife Jennifer, son Andrew and daughter Nichole, his Grays Harbor colleagues, and many IAFF brothers and sisters across the state. A memorial service was held for Brother Oldham on Wednesday, November 26, 2019 in Olympia.

In lieu of flowers, the family, IAFF Local 4258, the Central Park Volunteer Firefighters Association and Brady Volunteer Firefighters Association request donations to a memorial fund in Phil’s honor.  Donations will be used to create an annual scholarship for students pursuing a career in the fire service or paramedicine and to fund research for leukemia an cancers affecting firefighters.  Donations can be made on-line or mailed to the LT  Phil Oldham Memorial Fund, 6317 Olympia Highway, Aberdeen, WA 98520.

Honoring Philip Oldham

On December 22, 2019, the Valley Regional Fire Authority said goodbye to Firefighter 1st Class Dave Lewis after a long battle with occupational cancer. Dave started his firefighting career with the City of Auburn Fire Department in 1982, retiring from the Valley Regional Fire Authority in 2010. Dave served our communities for nearly 28 years in many different capacities. Shortly after retiring, Dave was diagnosed with cancer in 2011. He fought valiantly while living life to the fullest enjoying his family and the outdoors. Dave’s strength, work ethic, and compassion will be missed by all.

Celebration of Life

Saturday, February 29, 2020 12:00 p.m.

Enumclaw Expo and Event Center

45224 284th Ave SE

Enumclaw, WA 98022

Local 2099 Kirk RobinsonWith great sadness, the WSCFF reports the Line-of-Duty Death of Local 2099, Bothell Professional Fire Fighters Lieutenant Kirk Robinson on October 4, 2019 after a heroic 2-year battle with cancer.  At this time, we ask that the Robinson family’s request for privacy be respected.  If you would like to support Kirk’s family, Local 2099 is collecting contributions through the 501c3 Lionhardt Organization, please specify in the special instructions field that your donation is “on behalf of Kirk Robinson.”

An LODD memorial service was held October 24th at the Overlake Christian Church, 9900 Willows Road, Redmond, WA 98052.

2021 Member Deaths

It is with deep regret that we announce the death of Local 2639 Aberdeen member Chad Mittleider. Chad passed away suddenly on December 2 after experiencing a medical emergency. Chad served the Aberdeen Fire Department for 22 years and was a beloved member of Local 2639. There will be a public memorial service on January 15, 2022. We will provide more details once they become available.

Please read the Aberdeen Fire Department Memorial Announcement here.

Memorial Information:

January 15, 2022
1:00 p.m.
Aberdeen High School Auditorium
410 N. G Street
Aberdeen, WA

With great sadness, the WSCFF reports that Seattle Fire Deputy Chief Jay Schreckengost was found deceased in the Cliffdell area on August 14, 2021, twelve days after he was reported missing on a hunting trip.  Brother Schrekengost, IAFF Local 2898, Seattle Fire Chiefs,  was a husband, a father, and a friend to all and our hearts are with his family.

The Seattle Fire Department (SFD) reports that, since Captain Schreckengost was first reported missing, more than 60 different agencies and many of his fellow fire fighters responded to the site and worked on the search.  The Department acknowledged  “the tremendous support of the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office in leading the effort to find Jay. They, along with all of the technical teams and search and rescue volunteers, conducted an extensive search that led to today’s discovery.  We are grateful, too, for the support of businesses, who provided food and lodging and set up critical radio and cellular networks, and members of the community. ”

More information will be posted when it becomes available.

The WSCFF is sad to hear of the passing of Spokane Local 29 retiree Jim Rudd on Wednesday, October 20, 2021. Jim was an integral part of the WSCFF for many years. A constant presence starting in 1988 when he was elected as 1st District Representative, Jim was a part of the legacy and leadership in the WSCFF legislative arena from Local 29 Spokane that started with Jack Waller and Walt Lambert and later included Don Spangle, WSCFF Legislative Director Howard Vietzke, and WSCFF Legislative Assistant Ken Snider.  

During his time on the executive board, Jim was elected twice as Vice President of the WSCFF. Jim served at Sergeant-at-Arms for the WSCFF conventions when he was on the board – bypassing other committee chair opportunities to ensure the business of the organization was run smoothly and efficiently.  

 In 1995 Jim stepped down from the board with Jimmy Cason to join the WSCFF Legislative Team as Legislative Assistant, a position he held until his retirement in 2000. He was instrumental in the legislative successes of the WSCFF during these years, as the lead lobbyist twice changed abruptly during his tenure. 

 Jim was the first recipient of the WSCFF Position of Distinguished Service, created by resolution and awarded to Jim in 1998. After he retired from the WSCFF, Jim returned to serve as Parliamentarian of the WSCFF conventions from 2002 through 2014 – once again lending his steadfast approach to ensure the organization’s business was well-run. 

 Jim was a great friend to the WSCFF, the administrative staff, and anyone who knew him. He cherished his family, the fire service, telling stories, and time with friends. We will truly miss him. Please view Jim’s memorial here.

Jim Rudd’s Celebration of Life:
November 13, 2021
1:00-3:00 p.m.
Eagles Lodge
6410 N. Lidgerwood St.
Spokane, WA 99208








The WSCFF is sad to announce the death of retired firefighter Charles C. Hawkins on June 4, 2021. Charles served as WSCFF 11th District Representative and as President of Local 27 Seattle Fire Fighter Union from 1999-2002. Charles was also a member of the Seattle Black Firefighters Association. He retired from Local 27 in 2009, after 25 years of service.

 Memorial service information will be posted as soon as it becomes available.

It is with great sadness that the WSCFF and Local 469 Yakima announce the passing of retired firefighter Jack Lambert on the morning of June 3, 2021.

Jack was a 5-year veteran of the Yakima Fire Department before he was severely injured in the 1975 fire in Yakima’s Capitol Theatre. Jack was hit by falling debris when the roof collapsed, and the resulting injuries left him paralyzed from the waist down. Jack loved his time on the job, and his loved ones said it made him who he was post retirement.

Jack could always be found with fellow retirees at Waffles Cafe for the monthly retiree’s breakfast, sharing stories, and teaching “the new guys” a thing or two. Service details will be provided once available.

With deep regret and broken hearts, the WSCFF reports the death of Kelly Marie Walsh, the beloved wife of IAFF District Vice President Ricky Walsh. After a nearly three-year battle with cancer, Kelly passed away peacefully on April 8, 2021, surrounded by family and friends.

A celebration and memorial of a life well-lived will take place April 17, 2021 at Bend in the River Venue, 113618 No. Harrington Road, West Richland, Washington at 1:00 p.m. with refreshments to follow.  This is an outdoor venue, please bring lawn chairs or blankets for seating.

In lieu of flowers, donations in memory of Kelly Walsh can be made to:
IAFF 7th District Benevolent Fund
P.O. Box 5604
West Richland, WA99353
or by Venmo to @Ricky-Walsh-5

Chief Scott LaVielle

Memorial Service
March 13, 2021
New Life Church
15711 152nd Ave SE
Renton, WA 98058


2019-2020 Member Deaths

With deep regret, IAFF Local 1258 Moses Lake and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the death of member Andrew Deering. Andrew passed away on September 10, 2020.

Andrew served as a fire fighter/EMT for the Moses Lake Fire Department. To those who knew him, Andrew was a fiercely loyal friend who gave to others selflessly. His “B-shift” crew always had a fun nickname for Andrew, often referring to him as “Baby Loaf,” “White Mocha,” and “Magic Man.” He was referred to as a calm in the storm while on scene with patients. Everyone around knew he was the guy they could call on. His love of his beloved Seahawks and disdain for all things vinegar will be remembered by all. Andrew was always found goofing around and outside playing with his kids. He never lost his fun-loving ways, was always a big kid at heart, and his wife, children, and family were the center of his life.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, September 19, 2020 in Moses Lake, WA.

For more information, please see his memorial page.


With deep regret, IAFF Local 452 Vancouver and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the death of retired member Douglas Stephen Murray on August 9, 2020. Douglas retired from Local 452 Vancouver as an honorable fire fighter and fire captain.

Douglas enjoyed hiking, camping, listening to rock music, being an IPA connoisseur and was passionate about finding the best fried chicken sandwiches and fish tacos in whatever area he was visiting. He is survived by his wife, two daughters and dog Molly.

Memorial information will be provided as it becomes available. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and our brothers and sisters in Local 452. Please share a memory of Douglas at www.columbian.com/obits.

With deep regret, IAFF Local 828 Longview, Local 4447 Cowlitz #5 and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the death of member Alan “Al” Basso. Al died Friday, November 27, 2020, in the morning hours after he responded to two emergency medical calls and was later in a crash, having suffered a heart attack.

After 21 years with IAFF Local 828 Longview Fire Fighters, Al retired from his lieutenant’s position in January 2020 to become the volunteer captain of the Kalama Fire Department as well as an EMT and was a 36-year fire service veteran. Al also served for more than two years as a career firefighter with Kalama Fire before serving as a volunteer there for 21 years. Al spent five years with the Washington Department of Natural Resources as a seasonal firefighter.

Local 828 President Justin Noel, who worked with Al for more than 20 years, said, “Al was a great man with a heart full of compassion for his community, who quietly went about his work never seeking recognition. He is a coworker and friend whom all had positive experiences with and will be sorely missed.”

In addition to his work in the fire service, Al was also a substitute history teacher at the Kalama School District and had served as the elected Port of Kalama Commissioner since 2012. He is survived by his wife Vicky and daughter Brittany.

Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and our brothers and sisters in Local 828 and Local 4447.

To comply with state and county COVID-19 restrictions, the Longview and Kalama fire departments will hold a memorial procession on Friday, December 11 and a family service with full fire honors in February, 2021.

The procession will start at 2 p.m. at the Calvary Community Church in Longview, and will pass Longview Fire Stations 82 and 81, and Kalama Fire Station 51. The procession will conclude at the Port of Kalama’s Haydu Park. Due to COVID restrictions, the procession is not open to the public, and organizers ask the public not congregate at the starting point or at Haydu Park.

With deep regret, IAFF Local 29 Spokane and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters report the death of retired member Ed Foster. Ed retired on June 25, 2020 and died on July 26, 2020, due to complications from a cardiac event. Ed joined the Spokane Fire Department in March of 1993. As he left the station after finishing his final shift at Station 17, Ed shared a simple and very mindful message with his fire family, “Time flies. Please remember to be kind and do the right thing.”

“During the time that Firefighter Foster served our community he touched many lives,” Spokane Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer said. “His values and memory will live on through his brothers and sisters of Spokane Fire Department.”

Memorial information will be provided as it becomes available. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and our brothers and sisters in Local 29.

With deep regret the WSCFF reports the death of Lieutenant Jay Wheeler,  Local 27 Seattle Fire Fighters Union, who passed away March 4, 2020, from cancer. Jay was surrounded by friends and family.  He was a firefighter on Rescue 1 before promoting to lieutenant. He was also a Seattle police officer before joining the SFD. Jay will be remembered by all who knew him for his spirit, strength, humor and his boisterous laugh that carried throughout the station for all to hear.

A public memorial service, previously scheduled for Thursday, March 26, has been cancelled due to Coronavirus concerns and shelter in place restrictions.  The Seattle Fire Department will reschedule the service, and we will announce those details when they are available.


With deep regret the WSCFF reports the passing of retired Spokane Fire Department member Kenneth Strong on December 29, 2019 at the age of 91. Ken was hired by the Spokane Fire Department in 1958 and retired as a Lieutenant out of Station #17 in 1987. He served as Local 29 President for over 17 years and was very active with the WSCFF. Please keep his family, friends, and the Spokane Fire Department family in your thoughts during this difficult time.

Memorial for Ken Strong
Saturday, January 25th, 2020
2:00 p.m.
Salem Lutheran Church
1428 West Broadway
Spokane, WA 99201

Captain Eric BoutwellWith profound sadness that the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters, Burien Union Fire Fighters Local #1461, and King County Fire District #2 report the death of Captain Eric Boutwell in Walla Walla on Wednesday, September 11, 2019.

Celebration of Life
Saturday, September 21, 2019
11:00 a.m.
River of Life Fellowship
10615 SE 216th Street
Kent, WA 98031

Class A or B uniforms are appropriate.  There will be no outside agency apparatus in the procession.

Brother Boutwell was a valued friend and colleague for all of us lucky enough to know and work with him. Eric joined the North Highline Fire District as a volunteer in 1992 and became a career firefighter at Station #18 in 1999 and touched many lives. He faithfully served the North Highline community for 26 years and, through a contractual consolidation in 2019, continued his dedicated service with King County Fire District #2. He is survived by his wife Krista, daughters Haley and Isabella; and many family and friends.

Local 1461 has established a memorial fund through the National Police & Fire Foundation to support Eric’s daughters’ education.

Local #1461, the King County Fire District #2 Family, and the Washington State Council of Fire Fighters extend our heartfelt sympathies, even as we struggle to understand this tragedy. Please keep his family and loved ones in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

Contact Shauna Sheppard for more information: 206-209-4129.

It is with deep regret that we announce the death of Local 2776 Raymond retired member Robert (Bob) Hathaway on September 2, 2019.  Bob passed away at his home after a long battle with cancer. Bob started his career at Raymond Fire Department in 1977 and became Fire Marshall 8 years later. Bob retired after 30 years but remained known as the department’s “Fix it Guy.” He was the one called on first when his fellow firefighters needed help with anything, even if they had broken it. But more than anything, Bob was a great friend. All are welcome to come and celebrate the life of Bob. The memorial is an informal service and Class A’s are not necessary.

Memorial Service:
Saturday, October 19th, 2019
1:00 p.m.
St. Lawrence Church
1112 Blake Street
Raymond, WA 98577