WAYCROSS, Ga. -- A Waycross firefighter lost his life while fighting a fire in a vacant home Sunday morning.
Waycross Fire Chief David Eddins says The Office of Insurance and Fire Safety Commissioner Ralph Hudgens has ruled the fire as arson. Under Georgia law, the firefighter's death is now being investigated as a homicide.
Lieutenant David Jeff Little, 50, died while working a structure fire shortly after midnight in Waycross, according to Eddins.
"Jeff's loss hits deep into the heart and soul of this community and Fire Department," Eddins said.
Residents living near the vacant home on Isabella Street say they were awakened by flames followed by sirens.
"I seen a bunch of flames and fire trucks and ambulances everywhere," said Tommy Williams who lives across the vacant home.
Little began his career in public service over 30 years ago. He had been a firefighter with the Waycross Fire Department since February of 2002.
Little's wife and family did not want to comment so soon, but say he was a great man. His brother James said Little had one 18-year-old son.
The Georgia State Fire Marshal, Waycross Police Department, and Waycross Fire Marshal are investigating the incident. Anyone with information should call the Waycross Police Department at 912-287-2921.
First Coast News