Canadian firefighter, hockey coach dies battling fire in Pennsylvania

Sean DeMuynck, a volunteer firefighter who won the Memorial Cup as a video coach with the Windsor Spitfires, has died while battling a fire in Pennsylvania.

According to Pennsylvania media, DeMuynck, a volunteer firefighter in Wynnewood, Penn., died at the hospital after fighting the blaze during his last call before he was set to move back to Canada.

“The Windsor Spitfires are deeply saddened by the loss of our dear friend and former colleague Sean W. DeMuynck. Our love and thoughts go out to Sean and all of his family and friends,” a statement from the Spitfires says.

DeMuynck, who was originally from Elgin, Ont., worked as the Spitfires video coach from 2013-2017 and won a Memorial Cup championship with the team in 2017.

Spitfires general manager Bill Bowler remembers Demuynck as a hard worker and fun person.

“He always came prepared. Whenever there was a question or something was needed, Sean obviously had it prepared for his staff, his coaches,” he says. “That's all I can say. He was a real fun guy to be around and a tireless worker”

DeMuynck had been volunteering as a volunteer firefighter in Penn Wynne and Lower Merion Township since August 2019.

The Lakeshore Canadiens are deeply saddened by the loss of former assistant coach Sean DeMuynck. Thoughts and prayers to Sean's family and friends. pic.twitter.com/rphw8SgXKX

— Lakeshore Canadiens (@LSCanadiens) July 5, 2021

A news release from the Lower Merion Township Fire Department says crews responded to the blaze Sunday around 10:34 p.m. and upon arrival “found the structure heavily involved with fire and smoke, fire suppression began and incident command was established.”

Around 11:02 p.m. the department received a mayday and the Rapid Intervention Crew went into service.

Fire officials say DeMuynek was found on the third floor of the home unresponsive. He was rescued from the residence, and taken to the hospital, but staff were unable to revive him.

“The entire Windsor Spitfires organization is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of former video coach Sean DeMuynck. Sean was an awesome person to be around and always came to the rink well prepared. Sean will be dearly missed by everyone,” Bowler says.

DeMuynck is survived by his wife and parents. The couple had planned to move back home to rejoin their family Monday, the statement says.

“Firefighter and Spitfire DeMuynck will be missed. Once a Spitfire, Always a Spitfire.”