GARDEN GROVE (CBSLA) — The City of Garden Grove is mourning the passing of its fire chief.

Fire Chief Tom Schultz died Sunday from stage 4 pancreatic and liver cancer, according to a city spokesperson.

Garden Grove Mayor Steve Jones, in a statement, called him an “admirable man and an exceptional leader,” adding the community would “forever be in his debt.”

Schultz became the City of Garden Grove’s thirteenth fire chief in 2015 following a 30-year career with the Fullerton Fire Department. He retired last September but continued to serve as annuitant fire chief.

He is survived by his wife of over 30 years, Kim, their two daughters, and a son.

“Our most heartfelt thoughts and condolences are with his family during this difficult time, shared by all those who knew him,” Jones said.

City officials say Division Chief TJ McGovern, named Acting Fire Chief during Schultz’ illness, will continue in that capacity until further notice.

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