LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A Los Angeles Fire Department dispatch supervisor collapsed and died Monday, according to authorities.
Firefighters found 51-year-old Capt. Matthew McKnight unresponsive at the LAFD’s Metropolitan Fire Communications Center at 500 E. Temple St. just after 1 a.m.
McKnight, a 31-year veteran, was transported to County-USC Medical Center where he later died, officials said.
He was last seen at 12:55 a.m. near the end of a five-hour watch, where he supervised 11 firefighters and dispatchers.
“This came as truly shocking and devastating news, quickly followed by a wave of disbelief and deep sadness. Captain McKnight was strong, energetic, and young, a loving family man and father. He was someone many of us aspired to be like,” Firefighter and Paramedic Spokesman Erik Scott posted on Facebook. “I cannot remember a morning that he did not welcome you with a warm smile and a firm handshake, asking how you are doing, not superficially, but because he really cared. He was a very competent and knowledgeable Captain who found that perfect balance of kindness and being a Commanding Officer. He was NEVER too busy to help. I, along with so many others send our deepest condolences to the McKnight family. Words cannot express how sorry we are for your sudden loss.”
McKnight is survived by his wife, daughter, son and two brothers who also work for the fire department.
The cause of death is unknown pending an autopsy.
No further details were released.