Illinois Fire Service Institute

 

Firefighter Record

Firefighter Details

Name Leo White
Agency Danville Fire Department
Rank Firefighter
Type of Firefighter Career
Age Range 46 to 50
Sex Male
Date of Birth 6/22/1894
Date of Death 1/26/1941
Cause of Death Fall , Struck by object
Nature of Death Trauma
Attribute of Death [not applicable]
Type of Duty Firefighting operations , Hose operations , Ladder operations

Incident Details

Incident Name N/A
Incident City Danville
Incident State IL
Incident Date 1/26/1941
Incident Location Public assembly
Incident Attribute Fires

Incident Summary

On January 26, 1941, Firefighter Leo Francis White of the Danville Fire Department died in the line of duty while fighting a fire at the Allen Chapel of the African Methodist Episcopal Church located at 5th Avenue and North Street.

The fire started when the furnace in the church’s basement overheated, and firefighters responded to the fire at around 8:45AM. At around 10AM, White was standing on a ladder to aim a hose stream through a church window when a large piece of decorative stone molding fell off the church. The molding smashed through White’s ladder, and he was fatally injured by his fall.

Funeral services for White were held at Berhalter Chapel on January 29, and he was interred at Springhill Cemetery. He was survived by his widow, father, and two siblings.

A member of the Danville Fire Department for fourteen years, including non-consecutive service during the 1920s and continuous service since 1931, White was a World War I veteran and was previously employed by the Chicago and Eastern Illinois Railroad.

Citations:

“Danville Fireman is Killed,” Commercial-News, January 27, 1941.

“Victim of Blaze at Church Was Veteran City Fireman With 14 Years of Service,” Commercial-News, January 27, 1941.


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