Teen, Another Man Arrested In Firefighter's Death

By: Winnie Anne Wright Email
By: Winnie Anne Wright Email

Winnie Anne Wright
December 17, 2013

Valdosta - 17-year-old Zachery Jacob Thompson and 23-year-old Ronnie Joseph Crawford, have been charged with arson and murder in the death of 50 year old Lt. Jeff Little. Little lost his life while responding to a fire in a vacant house early Sunday morning.

"You ask the question 'why' and I don't know if you ever get that answer. That's something all of our guys are doing, asking 'why'. And so we go back and we look and after we get through our grieving time, then we will go back and look and see if there's anything", says Waycross Fire Chief, David Eddins.

Eddins says Little died after the roof collapsed while he was inside the home. He says crews were finishing up when Little took a rookie Firefighter back into the house for training on what the Waycross Fire Department calls their overhaul phase.

Georgia State Fire Marshal investigators ruled that the fire was arson, and received information from the Georgia Arson Control Hotline that led to the arrests.

Funeral arrangements will be held on Wednesday for the man friends say will leave a lasting impact on the community.

"So his legacy is going to be that he has helped train us and others, new people, and they're going to pass that on as they go through the ranks. So we are going to be seeing a lot of Jeff for years to come", says Eddins.

Little's funeral is open to the public and will be held Wednesday at Central Baptist Church in Waycross at 2PM.

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