An escort of police and fire vehicles on Monday transported the remains of a Paint Creek firefighter who lost his life in an accident Sunday.
Joe Patterson, 33, died from injuries sustained in an accident Sunday at Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District’s station in Rainsboro, according to public information officer Branden Jackman. Jackman said Monday that Patterson was working with a compressed air cylinder when it experienced “catastrophic failure.”
Jackman said Patterson was working with scuba tanks, and “one failed.” He said other firefighters were in the vicinity — “they were right there,” he said — but none were injured.
Patterson’s injuries “weren’t survivable,” Jackman said, adding that Patterson’s official cause of death was from head injuries.
According to an initial press release from Jackman, at approximately 2:16 p.m. Sunday, the Highland County Sheriff’s Office was contacted via radio to have a medical helicopter dispatched to the station at 12500 U.S. Route 50 approximately 10 miles east of Hillsboro.
Patterson was transferred to Kettering Medical Center via MedFlight helicopter.
He later died from his injuries, Jackman said.
Patterson lived in the Piketon area with his wife and three children, Jackman said.
Patterson had been with Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District for three years. He was certified as a firefighter in 2004, and as an EMT in 2008 at other departments, according to Jackman.
Jackman remembered Patterson as a kind and humorous coworker.
“Joe never had an unkind word for anybody,” he said. “He was just an all-around good guy.”
On Facebook, many of Patterson’s friends and coworkers changed their profile pictures to fire department insignias in his honor, and shared their condolences.
Patterson’s remains were transported to Chillicothe Monday afternoon with an escort of police and fire vehicles from various departments, Jackman said, including departments from Highland, Clinton, Montgomery, Franklin and Hamilton counties that “offered support, manpower, pretty much everything we need.”
“Special thanks to the City of Dayton Fire Department and Kettering Fire Department,” Jackman added. “There were guys from those two departments waiting at the hospital for the helicopter to land. That way Joe was never alone.”
Patterson is survived by his wife, Jennifer, and three children. Jackman and others were in Chillicothe Monday evening meeting with family members.
He said funeral arrangements are pending.
Reach David Wright at 937-402-2570, or on Twitter @DavidWrighter.