Firefighter killed was son of firefighter also injured

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Glendale volunteers experience tragedy at van fire on I-65

By Jeff D'Alessio

Firefighters across the county are mourning the loss today of a member of the Glendale Volunteer Fire Department.

Jonathan French, 25, who had been a member of the department since Jan. 2, 2011, was killed early this morning on Interstate 65 when struck by a vehicle. His mother, Lisa French, 43, also was hit and suffered serious injuries and taken t University Hospital in Louisville.

The Frenches and Glendale Chief Richard Peters responded to a vehicle fire near mile-marker 87. The vehicle was nearly extinguished when the crash happened.

Peters is the brother of Lisa French and Jonathan's uncle.

“It’s a deep pain because we are a brotherhood,” Elizabethtown Fire Department Chief Mike Hulsey said. “Glendale is immensely devastated at this time by what happened today.''

Police closed the southbound lanes on the interstate shortly after the collision. It reopened just before 2:30 p.m. Traffic congestion in the south end of Elizabethtown was heavy on U.S. 31W as detoured traffic rejoined the interstate in Glendale at Exit 86.

The Glendale Fire Department is one of 14 fire departments in the county.

The 23-person Glendale department has been taken offline by the fatality, Elizabethtown Fire Chief Mike Hulsey said. The volunteer departments of Sonora and Upton will handle calls for the southern end of the Glendale’s service area. Central Hardin Volunteer Fire Department and the EFD would handle north zone calls. Hulsey said he expects it to remain this way until at least after the funeral for Jonathan French.

See Thursday's print edition of The News-Enterprise for more details.