Longtime Orland firefighter dies unexpectedly

Firefighter Bruce Bennett and his companion keep watch at a structure fire in northwest Orland some years back. Glenn County Observer photo by Larry Judkins.

By Larry Judkins

Glenn County Observer

Longtime Orland Firefighter Bruce Bennett died unexpectedly at his home south of town late Wednesday morning.

At about 11:14 a.m. on Dec. 21, Glenn County Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to the 61-year-old Bennett’s home on County Road M for a report of an “unresponsive male.” At 11:27 a.m., the Orland Fire Department was also dispatched to the scene.

Glenn County Sheriff’s Deputy Vargas arrived at about 11:40 a.m. and was informed that Bennett had died a few minutes earlier. Deputy Vargas initiated a coroner’s investigation and spoke with the next of kin, Kimberly Bennett (daughter), who was on scene.

The body of the decedent was later released to Sweet-Olsen Family Mortuary of Orland.

Persons listed in the sheriff’s log for this incident include Orland Assistant Fire Chief John McDermott, Orland Firefighter and Glenn County Sheriff’s Deputy Grant Lemmon, and daughter Nicole Ordaz. The reporting party was Teresa Lamb of Corning.

On its Facebook page on Thursday, the Orland Fire Department posted the following message:

“It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of one of our own. Bruce Bennett passed away yesterday unexpectedly. Bruce served with the Orland Fire Department for 25+ years.

“Bruce worked on strike teams and volunteered countless hours at our station. He loved sharing his knowledge with the younger generation and loved nothing more than seeing his children share in what he loved.

“Bruce will be greatly missed and may he R.I.P.”

Bruce Bennett’s daughter, Kimberly Bennett, included the following message with the GoFundMe account she opened to raise money to cover funeral expenses:

“As many of you may have heard, we tragically and unexpectedly lost our Dad today. Our Dad was Bruce Bennett.

“He was the most amazing father and grandfather. He also dedicated the better part of the last 25 years serving his community as a firefighter.

“At this time, we thank everyone who has given their condolences. We are currently just trying to process this sudden loss.

“We would greatly appreciate any help that can be given to cover end of life/funeral costs for our Dad. Unfortunately, we were not in any way prepared for this.

“He is survived by myself, Kimberly Bennett; his daughter, Nicole Ordaz; and his son, Patrick Bennett.”

The link to the GoFundMe account follows:

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