Lt. Vincent Perez, 48, died June 2nd after responding to a two-alarm fire in the Diamond Heights neighborhood. Perez and two other firefighters were inside the structure fighting what was described as an “aggressive fire” when an emergency alarm beacon attached to the active department employees went off. Staff tried to contact the firefighter, but were unable to do so. The communications center then notified the command staff.
Additional crew members were sent in, and they found two firefighters down and badly burned. Perez and firefighter Anthony Valerio were pulled out of the burning building, while a female firefighter walked out on her own. A sudden surge of flames or “flashover” was to blame for leaving two of the three firefighters unconscious with severe burns inside the burning four-story home. Lt.Perez later went into full cardiac arrest after suffering burns and smoke inhalation during the morning blaze.
Lt. Vincent Perez was a former Marine and Alameda County sheriff’s deputy.