Fallen Heroes

In Memory

In memory of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty at the Joplin Fire Department.

Firefighter Lee Sherwood

  • February 13, 1923

A fire broke out at the First Presbyterian Church at Sixth and Pearl streets on February 13, 1923. Lee Sherwood, a 14-year veteran with the Joplin Fire Department, became critically injured when he was thrown from a second-story window of the church and fell to the sidewalk below. Sherwood died shortly afterward at St John’s Hospital. This unfortunately became the first death for the Joplin Fire Department.

Driver Frank Krudwig

  • June 26, 1934

On June 26, 1934, at 2:00 pm, Joplin Fireman Frank Krudwig was killed driving the Fire Department’s American La France pumper truck. Krudwig was responding to a fire alarm when his truck struck a curb rounding a corner at Fourth Street and Empire Street. The truck flipped over, crushing Krudwig and killing him instantly. Krudwig held the position of driver and had been with the department since 1926.

Firefighter Frank Simmons

  • December 28, 1939

Frank Simmons collapsed and died of a heart attack, shortly after returning from fighting a house fire on North Harlem in Joplin, Missouri. The fire came in at 0730 hours on December 28, 1939, and Firefighter Simmons collapsed at 0850 hours after returning back to the station. Firefighter Simmons had shown no signs of illness and was quoted as saying "I feel good today", as they responded to the structure fire on Harlem.

Firefighter Gerald Stults

  • June 30, 1944

Gerald Stults, former Joplin Chief of Detectives in the Police Department, collapsed and died of an apparent heart attack at the East Fire Station, where he had recently begun his career with the Joplin Fire Department as a fireman. 

Firefighter John Serage

  • November 7, 1947

John Serage began working for the Joplin Fire Department on April 20, 1940. He was promoted to driver on November 15, 1941. On November 7, 1947, Serage died on duty from a heart attack.

Captain Thomas Enright (former Fire Chief)

  • February 2, 1951

Thomas Enright reported for duty at 2300 hours on February 1 and answered his last call at 2352 hours. He was found deceased at 0615 hours on February 2nd, in his bed from what is believed to have been a heart attack.

Lt. James Kallenberger

  • December 15, 1972

Lt. James Kallenberger and his fellow firemen made an emergency call to a residence at 1116 South Jackson. Upon returning to the station, Lt. Kallenberger suffered a heart attack and died at 10:25 am at St John’s Medical Center. Lt. Kallenberger began working for the Joplin Fire Department February 1965. He was promoted to driver in 1968 and became lieutenant in 1971. Lt. Kallenberger was in charge of Joplin Fire Station No. 2 at 18th Street and Wall Avenue.