|Birth: ||Feb. 24, 1942|
|Death: ||Aug. 30, 1975|
The Sunday Bulletin – Philadelphia; Sunday morning, August 31, 1975, Page 1:
"Gulf Oil Toll Rises; 8th Fireman Dies
Philadelphia Fireman Carroll K. Brenek died yesterday at 5:25 P.M. in St. Agnes Hospital. He died of injuries suffered while attempting to save his fellow firemen. The 33 year-old Brenek was the eighth city firefighter to die from burns suffered in the 11-alarm blaze at Gulf Oil Refinery in South Philadelphia Aug. 17. One week ago today, Fire Lt. James J. Pouliot, 35, died of burns suffered in the $11-million fire that burned for nine days, six hours. He was buried on Friday. Two weeks ago today, six city firemen perished at the scene when a pool of oil they were standing on ignited. This has been the worst disaster for city firefighters since Oct. 28, 1954, when 10 firemen were killed in a North Philadelphia chemical tank explosion. Brenek, attached to Engine 57, 55th and Pine sts., was admitted to the hospital in critical condition with 2d and 3d-degree burns over 72 percent of his body. His death was attributed to septicemia, a buildup of bacteria in the blood. It was this complication that also claimed the life of Lt. Pouliot. Brenek, who lived at 6449 Morris Park road, West Philadelphia, with his wife Nancy and their two children, Laura, 3, and Stephen, 1, was visited in the hospital by John Cardinal Krol, on Aug. 20. "After seeing Brenek," the Cardinal said, "He knows that he's serious, but I would say that his attitude is very good." Krol said Brenek told him that he was "going to make it."
Brenek, a native of Philadelphia, was an 11-year veteran of the fire department. A department spokesman said Brenek suffered the massive burns while attempting to save the men who had become trapped in the flash fire that enveloped them when the pool of crude oil ignited beneath a thick layer of foam. In citing Brenek's "heroic efforts" to save his fellow fireman, Fire Commissioner Joseph R. Rizzo said last night that on behalf of all the men and women of the fire department her was expressing "the deep sense of loss and sorrow at the passing of their beloved comrade," and offering "deepest condolences to the entire Brenek family." Commissioner Rizzo, after hearing that Brenek had died, went to St. Agnes Hospital to console Mrs. Brenek.
Brenek attended St. Joan of Arc Parochial School and Northeast Catholic High School before enlisting in the U.S. Air Force. He served four years with the Strategic Air Command. After receiving an honorable discharge from the Air Force, Brenek was appointed to the fire department in 1964. Commissioner Rizzo said Brenek was "an outstanding member of the department," and was admitted and respected by all his fellow workers. His courageous actions on their behalf, which results in his own critical injuries, "speak for themselves."
2 Still Hospitalized
Fireman George Schrufer and David Schoolfield remained in serious condition at Crozier-Chester Burn Center last night, but a hospital spokesman said their condition was "improving and considered stable." In addition to the eight deaths and two firemen seriously injured at the Gulf fire, four Gulf emloyes were injured and 16 other city firemen were taken to area hospitals where they were treated and released. These numbers do not include the Gulf employes and Philadelphia firemen who received first-aid treatment at the scene."
The Evening Bulletin – Philadelphia; Monday, September 1, 1975, Page 12:
August 30, 1975, CARROLL K. BRENEK, of 4449 Morris Park Road, husband of Nancy Brenek (nee Eyanson). Relatives, friends and members of Phila. Fire Dept. are invited to Mass of Christian Burial Thurs., 10 AM at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, 63rd St. and Lancaster Ave., where friends may call Wed. eve. 7 to 10 PM. Int. Hillside Cem. In lieu of other remembrances, donations may be sent to St. Agnes Burn Center in his memory."
Created by: Donna Di Giacomo
Record added: Jun 27, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 92704390