HARDIN COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) - It's a tragic loss for a Kentucky volunteer fire department. A firefighter died after police say a tractor trailer slammed into a fire truck along I-65 in Hardin County.
Investigators say Glendale Firefighter Jonathan French, 25, was killed. His mother and fellow firefighter, Lisa French, was seriously injured. The two were on the scene of a vehicle fire at about 3:30 a.m. when it happened.
Many people in Hardin County, especially emergency personnel, are devastated by that crash that killed a volunteer firefighter. The chief of that fire department has very close ties to this tragedy.
"It's going to be rough for us. We're down, but we're not out," said Richard Peters, a family member and chief at Glendale Volunteer Fire Department.
For Fire Chief Richard Peters, this crash hits closer to home than anyone else. He comes from a family of firefighters with Jonathan French being his nephew and Lisa French being his sister.
"Jonathan's grandfather and my father did it for several years," said Peters. "I grew up in it and then his mother and father both are firefighters. And as they grew up, his brother and his sister both on as firefighters here."
State police tell us semi slamming into a fire truck while responding to a vehicle fire along I-65 while Peters was there responding along with his nephew and sister.
"We were still trying to deal with taking care of our people and the actual emergency," said Peters.
Now, the Glendale Volunteer Fire Department is trying to cope with what happened and will be off line. More than a dozen fire departments in the area will be covering their area until further notice.
"I'm still taking care of the fire department as the chief, and I'm still taking care of the family," said Peters.
The investigation continues as they mourn the death of one and pray for the healing of another.
"We're not holding grudges against anybody," said Peters. "It's a risk that we take when we sign on to be volunteers."
Jonathan French was a volunteer firefighter for five years in Glendale. His mother is one of 23 volunteer firefighters at the same department and has been for seven years. We're told she's still in serious condition.
State police are investigating the crash, but no charges have been filed.
Jonathan French's visitation and funeral arrangements have been set at Brown Funeral Home in Elizabethtown.
French's visitations are on Saturday, August 9, 2014 from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM at the Glendale Fire Department. Again on Sunday, August 10, 2014 from 3:00 PM to 8:00 PM at First Christian Church. And on Monday, August 11, 2014 from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM at First Christian Church
French's funeral is set for Monday, August 11, 2014 at 12:00 PM at First Christian Church.