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Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department Chief Curtis Brown, firefighter Brendan Torres, 19, killed in crash

A northwestern Texas town is mourning the loss of two firefighters killed in a car crash while returning to the station from a call.

In a Facebook post, the Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department said firefighter Brendan Torres, 19, and Chief Curtis Brown, 51, died during a collision with a semi-trailer truck Tuesday night.

Both Torres and Brown were pronounced dead at the scene.

“It is with hearts full of sadness and grief, that we inform you, last night DVFD lost 2 of our own in a vehicle accident,” the department wrote. “Please give the families, Firefighters, and their families space and time as we figure out how to move forward.”

The morning after the crash, Dalhart Mayor Justin Moore asked that businesses within the city lower flags to half-staff in honor of Torres and Brown.

Moore also issued the following statement to local media outlet My High Plains:

“These two men gave their lives doing what they lived for. They both had a servant’s heart and gave so much to the community. Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department is currently in Standby STATUS and is being assisted by other agencies in the area. Please keep the families of these two men and our city in your prayers as we endure this difficult time.”

Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department Chief Curtis Brown and member Brendan Torres died after colliding with a sem-truck.
Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department / Facebook

Dalhart is a small town in the Texas panhandle that sits in Hartley and Dallam counties.

Hartley County Judge Ronnie Gordon and Dallam County Judge Wes Ritchey issued a joint proclamation Wednesday declaring Thursday, Oct. 6, as “Curtis Brown and Brendan Torres Day.”

The day was marked as a celebration of life for both men and “their tireless service and commitment” to both counties.

The National Fallen Firefighters Memorial in Maryland lowered its flags half-staff in honor of Curtis Brown and Brendan Torres.
Dalhart Volunteer Fire Department / Facebook

Services for Torres and Brown are scheduled to take place Monday, Oct. 10, at 2 p.m. in the Rita Blanca Coliseum.

The two men mark the 76th and 77th on-duty firefighter deaths this year, according to the U.S. Fire Administration.