BALDWIN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A firefighter has died responding to an early morning blaze on Grand Avenue in Baldwin Wednesday.
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Volunteer firefighter Michael Esposito, 43, was complaining of shortness of breath when he arrived for duty at the firehouse, sources tell 1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera.
Apparently, his condition worsened while responding to a fire which broke out at a private residence around 3 :45 a.m.
1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports: Fallen Firefighter Felt Ill After Arriving At Scene
Officials said Esposito became ill at the scene and was rushed to a nearby hospital where he died.
It is not clear if he had heart problems.
Baldwin Fire Chief Kevin Smith said Esposito was a former captain and 21-year member of the department.
Firefighters at the Baldwin firehouse have put up a black bunting and the American flag at half staff to honor their fallen comrade.
“He was a very friendly guy, very outgoing, very active in the community as well as the department,” Smith said.
The cause of the blaze is under investigation.
Eight adults and one child managed to get out of the home safely, the Red Cross said.