Originally Posted Online: Dec. 03, 2012, 12:16 pm
Last Updated: Dec. 03, 2012, 12:53 pm

Firefighter killed battling Bartelso blaze

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BARTELSO, Ill. (AP) — A 15-year veteran of volunteer firefighting in southwestern Illinois has died after a fire truck struck him while he was working to control a blaze at a resort clubhouse, authorities said Monday.

Timothy Jansen, 45, died late Sunday after he was rushed to a hospital in Breese. He was pulling hoses off a fire truck when he slipped and the truck struck him, said Sante Fe Fire Protection District Chief Adam Maue. The truck's driver didn't know Jansen had fallen and thought it was OK to move the vehicle, Maue said.

"Speechless. Everyone was so shook up," Maue said. "We just tried to hold ourselves together."

The accident happened at a fire at the clubhouse for Jantzen's Resort area between Bartelso and Carlyle. The blaze started as a brush fire and then spread to the clubhouse. Bartelso is about 45 miles east of St. Louis.

Jansen is survived by a wife and two young daughters. He owned the Bartelso restaurant MacJenna's, which was across Illinois 161 from the fire station. On Monday morning a black cloth was draped across the fire station entrance.

"I'm waking up every hour in a cold sweat," Maue said. "It's a big tragedy. Everyone knew him and was real good friends with him."

Boondocks Market owner John McRoy said Jansen's death is a huge loss for the town.

"Everybody works together around here," McRoy said. "It's a pretty tight community."