East Texas fire departments already had stepped in to help Jackson Heights after Jalen Smith, 20, of Tyler, was critically injured Friday.
“We took Jackson Heights completely out of rotation for any kind of call,” said Johnny Brown, president of the Smith County Volunteer Fireman’s Association.
“The three neighboring departments, which are Winona, Chapel Hill and Arp, stepped up and they are covering Jackson Heights plus their departments,” Brown said.
Smith was one of three Jackson Heights volunteer firefighters traveling to the station in response to a vehicle crash at Farm-to-Market 2767 east of County Road 211 at 10:18 p.m. Friday, Texas Department of Public Safety spokeswoman Jean Dark said.
A vehicle allegedly pulled out in front of their vehicle on FM 2767 near County Road 387, and the driver rolled the vehicle several times trying to avoid a collision, Trooper Dark said Sunday.
Firefighters Cornelius Redwine, 21, of Tyler, and Gary Robinson, 18, of Tyler, were also taken to ETMC Friday, but both were treated and released.
Brown said firefighters are a brotherhood because of how closely they work together. He said the rest of the Smith County volunteer fire departments are ready to step up and help too, if needed.
“When it comes down to it, we all pull together and that’s what we’re doing now. We’re pulling together for our brothers at Jackson,” Brown said.