Florence County firefighters expected to make full recovery

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) - It was almost a week ago, three firefighters were injured in a 12-acre fire in Florence County.

WMBF News spoke with two of those firefighters to get their perspectives on what happened during that wildfire along Ashby and McIver Roads.

20-year-old Jake Delung is the firefighter who suffered second and third-degree burns while helping to battle that blaze.

Delung is the son of Windy Hill Fire Chief John Delung,who was commanding firefighters when his son was injured.

"We were working the fire and they advised me that they were making entrance into the structure," said Chief John Delung.

Jake Delung, along with two other firemen, were going inside of a mobile home to try and put out the flames, Jake was the first man inside the building.

"I went through the floor. I went directly into the fire," said Jake Delung.

"A mayday was called and at that point in time I had no idea who it was," said John Delung.

Chief Delung said after his son fell through the floor it was a matter of seconds before he was safely being drug out off the burning mobile home, thanks to two other firemen.

A short while later, West Florence Battalion Chief Anthony Fox, was injured trying to battle the flames inside of that same mobile home.

Fox suffered a minor injury and was treated and released.

"The best thing is to maintain good, situational awareness and to look at the conditions that are around you...know from your training and experience, that it's time to go."

Meanwhile, Jake Delung was transported to the Augusta Burn Center in Georgia, where he underwent surgery.

"They went in cleaned the burns and put cadaver skin on it,"said Jake Delung.

Jake Delung's burns are on his ears and neck.

Fire Chief Delung said his son was wearing all the proper equipment needed to remain safe while fighting the fire.

"The weakest part of it is the hood. It's the thinnest and least heat-resistant. So most of the time when fire fighters do get burned it's around the neck and ear area," said John Delung.

Jake said it will it will take a full three months for him to recover.

Chief Delung said he is thankful for the thoughts and prayers while his son was in the hospital. "I just want to let everyone know that he's doing really well, and we would like to thank everybody for the thoughts and prayers while he was in the hospital. He still has a long way to go," he said.

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