On July 13th at 5:24pm Marshfield Fire Protection District responded to a reported
house fire at 577 Hospitality Road in Niangua Missouri. Marshfield Fire Protection
District was responding as a mutual aid company along with Grovespring Fire
Protection District to assist Niangua Fire. Two Firefighters from Marshfield, Lt. Matt
Blankenship and Lt. James Lannan entered the structure in an attempt to extinguish
the fire. At 6:04pm conditions inside the structure rapidly deteriorated and the
firefighters became briefly trapped. A “may day” alarm was sounded and additional
fire crews were requested.
Lt. Lannan was able to escape with minor injuries while Lt. Blankenship was rescued
by other firefighters. Chief Shawn Ricks from Niangua was also injured during the
rescue operation and transported to Mercy Springfield where he was released on
7/14/2013. Lt. Blankenship suffered severe burns and was air lifted to Mercy Hospital
burn center in Springfield Missouri. Sadly on 7/20/13 Lt. Matt Blankenship passed
away due to his injuries.
We have been extremely humbled and thankful for the outpour of support that our
district and these firefighters and their families have received. We are fortunate to be
a part of such an outstanding and supportive community. Our brothers and sisters
in public safety have shown great strength as well and given their time and energy to
support our fire department family through this journey.
We ask that the public and media do not contact these firefighters or their families
directly but instead direct all inquiries to district headquarters.
If you would like to help a secure fund has been established for Lt. Matt
Blankenship's Family. You can find a link to the fundraiser page on the left. Although
the fire department insurance will cover most if not all of the hospital expenses,
other expenses such as travel, fuel, and other incidental expenses may not be.
Members of our department have also organized a Benefit Motorcycle “Poker Run”,
details will are listed at a link to the left. You now have the ability to purchase benefit
T-Shirts, please see the link to the left.
Again we want to thank you for your support and hope you will keep these
firefighters and their families in your thoughts and prayers.
Last Updated 7/20/2013