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The United States Fire Administration (USFA) has received notice of the following firefighter fatality: TX

It is with deep regret that I post the following USFA official line of duty death announcement of fellow brother firefighter Captain Thomas Araguz III. Our sincerest condolences go out to the family and the members of the Wharton Fire Department.

Thomas Araguz III

Rank: Captain
Age: 30
Gender: Male
Status: Volunteer
Years of Service: 11
Date of Incident: 07/03/2010
Time of Incident: 2130hrs
Date of Death: 07/03/2010

Fire Department:
Wharton Fire Department
Address: 319 N Fulton ST, Wharton, TX 77488-3903
Fire Department Chief: Bobby Barnett
Fire Department Website:

Incident Description: Captain Araguz was killed when he became caught and trapped by rapidly progressing fire conditions inside of a 25,000 square feet 250-foot-long processing building at a poultry farm. A contributing factor fueling the fire was large fans used to keep the animals cool. The cause of the fire remains under investigation by state and local authorities.

Incident Location: 580 Maxim DR, Boling, TX 77420-0020

Funeral Arrangements: Visitation, 07/10/2010 from 1300-180hrs at the Wharton Funeral Home, 515 E. Boling HWY, Wharton, TX. The funeral will take place 07/11/2010 at 1400hrs, Wharton Civic Center, 1924 N. Fulton, Wharton, TX. Public parking will be at the Wharton High School, 800 E. Ahldag. Buses will transport those attending beginning at 1230hrs and immediately after the funeral. Graveside services will follow at the Evergreen Memorial Park, 3511 E. Alabama RD (CR 166), Wharton, TX.

For those who would like to pay tribute to Captain Thomas Araguz III, the funeral procession will follow from Wharton Civic Center, south on Fulton ST, west on Boling HWY, south on North Richmond RD, east on Alabama ST, passing the Wharton Fire Station, then north on Alabama RD, ending at Evergreen Memorial Park.

Public needing more information may call (979) 532-4811 x400.

Fire Department personnel needing more information, call (281) 802-4561.

Memorial Fund Contact and Address: An account has been established for Captain Thomas Araguz III at The First State Bank of Louise, 505 E. Boling HWY, Wharton, TX ((979) 532-0404). Please make checks payable to The Thomas Araguz III Memorial Fund.

Tribute is being paid to Captain Thomas Araguz III at

To date, 40 firefighter fatalities have been reported to USFA in 2010; 38 from incidents that occurred in 2010 and 2 from previous year incidents. Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted online @

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