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Firefighter at RSM Station Suffers Heart Attack, Dies

Greg Hennessey, 49, was a Trabuco Canyon resident, a 24-year firefighter and mentor to teens.

Greg Hennessey was a 24-year veteran of the OCFA; he died on duty Monday in Rancho Santa Margarita. Credit/OCFA
Greg Hennessey was a 24-year veteran of the OCFA; he died on duty Monday in Rancho Santa Margarita. Credit/OCFA

Article originally posted Monday, 4:14 p.m. Updated to include additional information.

A 49-year-old Orange County firefighter suffered an apparent heart attack Monday at a station in Rancho Santa Margarita and was declared dead shortly afterward.

Greg Hennessey was found by his colleagues in full cardiac arrest at OCFA Station 45 about 9:40 a.m. on Monday. They immediately began lifesaving operations and transported him to Mission Hospital, where he was pronounced dead about 40 minutes later, according Capt. Steve Concialdi, spokesman for the Orange County Fire Authority.

Hennessey, an Eagle Scout-turned-firefighter who worked for the department for 24 years, was an apparatus engineer who mentored youths in the Explorer programs in RSM and Mission Viejo.

“Today we have lost a valuable family member,” OCFA Chief Keith Richter said. “Greg was a respected engineer and indispensable mentor to the young lives that he helped. We are assisting the Hennessy family during this difficult time, and appreciate the support from those around us.”

Hennessey began his career with the OCFA in 1990 and worked for 11 years as a firefighter until he was promoted to engineer in 2001. 

Hennessey, who lived in Trabuco Canyon, is survived by his mother Virginia, wife Deanna and two sons, Ryan, 22, and Brandon, 19.

Funeral arrangements were being made, Concialdi said.

—City News Service

TELL US IN THE COMMENTS: What sentiment or memory would you like to share with the Hennessey family and the crew of Station 45?

Robbie-Ann Oliveira January 20, 2014 at 08:27 PM
How very sad for his family and all his fire dept family.. My prayers are with you all to heal and remember all the good times together.. R.I.P. Now ...its his turn..
Jackie M. January 20, 2014 at 08:40 PM
Prayers to his friends, family, and the firefighters of Station 45. So sad :(
andy fischer January 20, 2014 at 09:23 PM
Bummer
Penelope Atkinson January 20, 2014 at 09:38 PM
I knew Greg and his family. His wife minded my child. His boys are my boys ages. Woa. PLEASE send my condolences to the family - will be praying. So tragic. I know he loved the Fire Dept so much. I am sure he will be well missed. Please let us know, perhaps via The Patch, when the funeral will be. I would like to pay my respects.
Cheri Miller January 20, 2014 at 09:52 PM
Pretty sure my daughter & I knew him through our visits to the station and probably even through CEPA just last year. Very sad news. Prayers to his wife and sons and to the entire Station 45, RIP Greg.
Mandy Gorven January 21, 2014 at 12:11 AM
R.I.P - so sad, so young too.
Pam Ragland January 21, 2014 at 11:03 AM
I have met him before and I recall him being kind to my son. It is so very sad he passed so young. He was in the right spot to get life saving measures right away, and I'm sure the other firefighters did their absolute best to help save him!!! Hopefully the family can take heart that every possible thing was done, and he passed doing what he loved.
Dara Zane Scully January 21, 2014 at 12:03 PM
This is really sad.
April Josephson January 21, 2014 at 09:49 PM
I met him at a community event. It was obvious what a dedicated man he was. My thoughts are with his family during this difficult time.
Brandon Wolfe January 22, 2014 at 02:38 AM
What a Sad Day ....He has been at my house several times during Emergency's and he was always very calm and collected but you could tell he was still Concerned about complete Stranger's.. Hope he is out there traveling through the Stars with a Big Grin on his Face. He Deserves it!!!
Alanna Rabe Wiktorowicz January 22, 2014 at 11:14 PM
He was just recently out at our house at 4 am in the morning for my son. He was so great and calm and helpful. We saw him a month later in september when they had the open house at the station. He chatted with us for a while and my son thanked him and his buddy. So Sad Station 45... :( Prayers for his wife and boys!

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