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Eleven firefighters & EMS personnel killed in West, Texas blast. Off-duty Dallas Capt. Kenny Harris among the dead.

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We have been down all day and have been updating the West, Texas story via Facebook and Twitter. As far as we can tell, the only one of the 11 dead from fire and EMS who has been identified is Capt. Kenny Harris from Dallas Fire-Rescue. Capt. Harris lived in West.


A Dallas Fire-Rescue captain was confirmed dead in the West Fertilizer Co. explosion, read a statement released by Lt. Joel Lavender, a spokesman with the department Thursday afternoon.

Capt. Kenny Harris, who lives in West, served as a firefighter at Station 30 in Dallas. Harris was not a volunteer firefighter for West but responded when he heard news of the fire that broke out Wednesday night at the plant, the statement read. Harris, 52, was a father of three grown sons.

“Captain Harris rushed to the scene compelled to provide assistance to his community during this crisis,” said Mayor Mike Rawlings. “I want to express my deepest condolences to his family, friends and co-workers.”

The State Firemen’s and Fire Marshals’ Association of Texas said Thursday afternoon in addition to Capt. Harris, they have confirmed five West firefighter deaths, four EMS responder deaths, and one death of a responder from an unknown department. In addition, 11 West volunteer firefighters are in the hospital, according to the association.

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