Firefighter Shot and Killed While Battling a Fire: Officials

By Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Jack Phillips
Breaking News Reporter
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.
January 31, 2022 Updated: January 31, 2022

A veteran firefighter was shot and killed while he was responding to a fire in Stockton, California, officials said Monday.

Fire Capt. Max Fortuna was attempting to put out a dumpster fire near downtown Stockton when he was hit by gunfire, Stockton Fire Chief Rick Edwards said. The shooting remains under investigation.

“This is my worst nightmare as a fire chief,” Edwards said. “My message to my firefighters is to be strong, my heart breaks with you but we will get through this.”

Stockton police officials told local media that a 67-year-old man was detained at the scene in connection to the shooting. Authorities said they also recovered a gun that was allegedly used in the shooting

Fortuna, who is survived by a wife and two children, is a 21-year veteran of the fire department.

“Today is a tragic day and tragic day … for Max Fortuna’s family,” Stockton Firefighters 456 Union President Mario Gardea said at a Monday news conference. “A tragic day to the family, his family at the fire station. Max … was a firefighter who showed up every day and never complained about being on the job … Max will be was always considered a legacy firefighter and he’s gonna be missed.”

The nearby Alameda County Fire Department also expressed its condolences by saying, “Terrible news coming from the @stocktonfire family. Our hearts, thoughts, and prayers go out to the members of the Stockton Fire Department and more importantly to the Stockton Fire Captain who was tragically shot and killed this morning. God Bless you and your family.”

Other details about the incident were not provided.

Jack Phillips
Breaking News Reporter
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.