Firefighter dies accidentally at Fourmile Lake

, Posted: Wed, July 30 2014 at 1:14 PM, Updated: Wed, July 30 2014 at 3:55 PM

Firefighter dies accidentally at Fourmile Lake

Klamath Falls, Ore. -- Southern Oregon's fire season has claimed a life a 21-year-old firefighter who has died at the Launch fire near Fourmile Lake in Klamath County.

NBC5's Christine Pitawanich spoke with Matthew David Goodnature’s mom over the phone and she said her son loved his job working as a firefighter with Pacific Aasis Wildland Firefighting, based in Ashland.

Klamath County Sheriff Frank Skrah says around 6:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday night, Goodnature stepped on a rock, slipped, and fell on a downed tree. The lower part of his back hit. Police say it appears he broke his back and died.  

Right now detectives are working on ruling out foul play, but there's no evidence to suggest it was anything other than an accident.

Matthew's mom, Judy Goodnature says this was his second season as a Wildland firefighter, he loved his job, his crew and liked doing something important with his life.

Matthew Goodnature graduated from Phoenix High School and had recently moved from Portland back to Medford.

Wednesday afternoon the Forest Service put out a statement saying,"the forest and the entire Wildland fire community are saddened by the tragic loss of one of our firefighters. Our hearts go out to their family, friends and co-workers.” 

Goodnature's mom also said her son was always extremely loving and never hung up the phone without saying 'I love you.'

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