For Immediate Release 03/22/2023
On Thursday, March 16, 2023, Bartow County Fire & Emergency Services Firefighter
Matthew Smith became unresponsive during a search and rescue training exercise at
the Bartow-Cartersville Fire Joint Training Center. Instructors for the exercise with
FF Smith immediately recognized that FF Smith was experiencing an acute medical
emergency and quickly removed him from the search maze to begin resuscitative
measures. Personnel of BCFES immediately began CPR and initiated Advanced
Cardiac Life Support protocols.
BCFES had an on-site ALS ambulance on standby for training, and the decision was
made for that unit to transport FF Smith to Piedmont Cartersville Hospital.
Emergency response personnel and Emergency Department staff, worked
tirelessly to resuscitate FF Smith. FF Smith did regain cardiac function and was
placed on life support for six days.
Regretfully, FF Smith passed away on Tuesday, March 21st from complications
related to his medical emergency. Funeral arrangements for FF Smith have not been
finalized at this time. FF Smith was 41 years old and had been a firefighter with
BCFES since 2021.