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Clendenin Volunteer Firefighter Killed In Car Crash

Reported: Feb. 9, 2014 11:20 AM EST
Updated: Feb. 9, 2014 11:17 PM EST
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CLENDENIN, W.Va. (Chris Williams) -- A Kanawha County community is mourning the loss of a local firefighter.

Lt. Nathan Smith, 26, of the Clendenin Fire Department died after a car accident Saturday night in Elkview.

"We heard a horrible noise, it sounded like an explosion," Paul Jeffery of Elkview said.

That is how Jeffery describes what happened when Smith hit a telephone pole. After hitting the pole, Smith’s vehicle went through Jeffery's yard, hit his truck, then crashed into the front porch of the house next door.

"His truck went up over my truck, completely over it,” Jeffery said. “Then turned in mid-air. I assume it was in mid-air, and hit the top of her porch roof.”

Smith died from his injuries and, thankfully, no one else was injured in the accident.

The Kanawha County Sheriff's office is continuing to investigate what might've caused Smith to crash.

Smith was a beloved 13-year veteran of the Clendenin Fire Department, an EMT and worked with the 130th Airlift Wing in Charleston.

"He had been deployed last year to Afghanistan, and returned home just a little over a year ago,” Clendenin Fire Chief Kevin Clendenin said.

Clendenin said Smith loved serving his community through the guard, and fire department.

“It's tough,” he said. “You have to remember why you're doing it. Nathan surely knew why he was doing it.”

Members of the fire department draped black ribbon over Smith's locker to honor him.

Clendenin said his crew will move on the only way the can - one call and one day at a time.

The tragic accident has shaken up the small community.

"This is probably, I’d have to say, one of the most devastating things we've had happen to us," Jeffery said.




BLUE CREEK, W.Va. (Mamie Buoy) - A Kanawha County firefighter has died after a car crash Saturday night.

According to a press release issued by the Kanawha County Sheriff's Office, Nathan Smith lost control of his pickup truck in the 5100 block of Elk River Road North in Blue Creek, hit a natural gas meter, a parked car and a house. The impact of the crash caused the vehicle to flip.

Smith was pronounced dead at the scene.

Smith was a member of the Clendenin Volunteer Fire Department.

Nobody inside the home was hurt and deputies say Smith was the only person inside the vehicle.

Stay tuned to Eyewitness News for more on this developing story.



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