KC Firefighters Killed in Fire

Two firefighters are dead after a burning apartment building collapses in Kansas City.

The blaze broke out inside the apartment building about 7:30 last night. Two residents were pulled from the building, but they were not hurt.

The building partially collapsed about 8 p.m., injuring four firefighters including, two critically. The injured firefighters were rescued from the building and taken to a hospital, where two of them later passed away. The rest of the building later collapsed.

The latest on the collapse of a burning apartment building in Kansas City that killed two firefighters:

7:55 a.m.

The Kansas City fire chief says two firefighters were killed when a section of a burning building collapsed, blowing a wall outward about 30 feet and trapping them.

Chief Paul Berardi choked back tears as he spoke of Larry J. Leggio and John V. Mesh who were killed when the wall collapsed onto them Monday night. Two others were injured fighting the fire at the building that had businesses on the ground level and apartments above.

He says the collapse happened after the building had been evacuated and that it appears a second-story section collapsed, forcing a wall outward about 30 feet. The firefighters killed and two others who were injured were outside the building working to protect a grocery store separated from the burning structure by an alley.

7:35 a.m.

Kansas City authorities have identified two firefighters who were killed when a wall collapsed on them in a burning building.

The firefighters died Monday night as a massive fire engulfed the building on the city’s northeast side.

During an emotional news conference early Tuesday, Fire Chief Paul Berardi identified the firefighters as 17-year department veteran Larry J. Leggio and 13-year veteran John V. Mesh.

He didn’t provide their ages.

Berardi says the two died after rescuing at least two residents from the apartment building blaze.

Two other firefighters were injured. Berardi says one has been released from the hospital, and the other may be released Tuesday.

Crews were still at the scene of the fire early Tuesday. The cause of the fire is under investigation.

6:45 a.m.

A Kansas City apartment building that collapsed, killing two firefighters, is still burning 12 hours after the blaze began.

Fire Chief Paul Berardi says two other firefighters were injured Monday night as the massive fire engulfed the building on the city’s northeast side.

Berardi says the two who died saved two residents shortly before the building collapsed around them. He says they “did not die in vain.”