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Fallen Boston Firefighters Identified

Lt. Ed Walsh and Firefighter Michael Kennedy were killed in a huge blaze in Back Bay.

Michael Kennedy (left) and Ed Walsh. Credit: Facebook photo, City of Boston website
Michael Kennedy (left) and Ed Walsh. Credit: Facebook photo, City of Boston website
The two firefighters killed in a huge blaze in Back Bay Wednesday were identified as Lt. Ed Walsh and Firefighter Michael Kennedy.

"It's a tragic day," Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said in a news conference just after 8 p.m.

The nine-alarm blaze broke out at about 2:45 p.m. in the basement of 298 Beacon St. Firefighters were still at the scene bringing it under control as of 8 p.m.

Walsh, 43, of West Roxbury, served on Engine Company 33. He was married and had three children all under the age of 10.

Kennedy, 33, of Hyde Park, served on Ladder Company 15. He was single and served in the Marine Corps.

Walsh was pronounced dead at the scene, while Kennedy was pronounced dead at Mass General Hospital.

Thirteen firefighters and several police officers were also injured in the blaze. Their injuries ranged from burns to broken bones, according to Deputy Fire Chief Joe Finn.

Finn said he's never seen a fire travel so fast.

"(It) was blowing like a blowtorch," he said at the news conference, adding high winds of up to 50 mph during the day stoked the flames.

Finn said firefighters saved a bunch of people inside.

He said there was no initial evidence of arson.

Gov. Deval Patrick released this statement:
“My heart and my condolences go out to the families of the firefighters lost in the line of duty today, as well as to the entire Boston Fire Department. This terrible tragedy reinforces how we must be grateful every single day for the brave men and women who put themselves in danger day in and day out to keep us safe.”

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