November 07, 2012

Flags lowered to honor firefighter

Under a proclamation signed by Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, the United States flag and the Illinois flag are to be at half-staff at all State of Illinois facilities in honor of a firefighter stricken while battling a fire last week in Chicago.

Flags are to be flown at half-staff until sunset, Thursday, Nov. 8, in honor of Capt. Herbert T. Johnson, 54, of Chicago. Reports indicate Johnson died Nov. 2 from injuries by a flashover burst of flames while he was battling a fire in a Gage Park neighborhood home.  Johnson went into cardiac arrest when the flashover damaged his airways, and he later died at the University of Chicago Medical Center emergency room.

Reports are that Johnson, a 33-year fire department veteran, saved several families, including many with small children, from the fire before he was stricken.  In 2007, Johnson earned the state’s Medal of Honor for bravery, the highest honor given in Illinois to a firefighter.