Firefighter/Paramedic suffers medical emergency at wildland fire; pronounced deceased at hospital

Dennis M. Bender had been with Ponca Hills VFD in Nebraska for 50 years

Dennis M. Bender
Dennis M. Bender. Photo credit: Ponca Hills Volunteer Fire Department.

Firefighter/Paramedic Dennis M. Bender died March 10 as the result of a medical emergency while working in support of crews at a fire north of Omaha, Nebraska, said Ponca Hills Volunteer Fire Chief Joe Sacks. He was immediately taken to a hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

It was the department’s third wildland fire of the day.

Mr. Bender, Nebraska’s longest serving paramedic, lived in the Ponca Hills and was affiliated with the volunteer fire department for 50 years. He was among the first group of Certified Paramedics in the state.

He and his wife of 52 years, Patty, both died on March 10, one year apart. Patty died in 2020.

Our sincere condolences go out to Mr. Bender’s family, his fellow firefighters and paramedics, and his friends.

Thanks and a tip of the hat go out to Bill.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

One thought on “Firefighter/Paramedic suffers medical emergency at wildland fire; pronounced deceased at hospital”

  1. My condolences to all involved. Volunteering for 50 years is absolutely remarkable. May he rest easy now and my best to his department.


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