1st Sterling firefighter dies in line of duty while responding to Rock Falls house fire

STERLING, Ill. (WLS) -- Lieutenant Garret Ramos became the first Sterling firefighter to die in the line of duty Friday, said Sterling City Manager Scott Shumard.

Ramos, a 38-year-old father of two, responded to a call of a house fire in Rock Falls around 11:04 p.m. on Dec. 3, Shumard said. In the early hours of Dec. 4, Ramos was inside fighting the house fire at 10031 Ridge Road when the floor collapsed beneath him, prompting a rescue operation.

Emergency medical service crews attempted life-saving efforts while transporting Ramos to CGH Medical Center, where doctors continued those techniques to no avail, the department said.

Ramos served with the Sterling Fire Department for nine years.

"He was an amazing individual of the highest caliber on and off duty," Shumard said. "It is a truly devastating loss to his family, the city family especially his brothers in the fire service, and to the larger Sterling community."

Shumard said the state fire marshal will be conducting a full investigation into the incident.
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