Washington Twp. mourns death of firefighter who died from COVID-19 complications

Posted at 12:49 PM, Dec 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-04 12:49:28-05

WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Washington Township is mourning the loss of a longtime fire lieutenant, who passed away this morning from complications of COVID-19, the township announced this afternoon.

Lt. Jeff Guernsey passed away today, according to WCPO's partners WHIO.

Guernsey had been with the department since the start of his career in 1990. He was promoted to lieutenant in December 2001.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Guernsey family. Their grief is unimaginable and our hearts go out to them,” said Jesse Lightle, Washington Twp. Administrator.

In addition to his service to the Washington Twp. and Centerville communities, Guernsey was a member of the U.S. Armed Forces and also served in the U.S. Navy.

“Washington Township has lost a truly remarkable person. Jeff could make any of us smile. He was never happier than when talking about his family, especially his children and grandchildren. He was an incredible friend and colleague and words can’t express how much we will all miss him,” said Washington Twp. Fire Chief Scott Kujawa.

Centerville, who receives its fire services from the township, also expressed their condolences for Guernsey.

“We are so sorry to hear about this tremendous loss, and we are grateful for the years Lt. Guernsey devoted to protecting our community,” said Centerville City Manager Wayne Davis.

Township officials said Guernsey was always dedicated to his family at home and at work. He also worked hard to make sure he was always there for his children when they were playing sports and loved to travel, the township said.

Guernsey received the Armed Services Veterans Award as well as two commendations for his actions during a 2016 trench rescue and 2017 fire. He also served as the head of the township’s honor guard.

The township said its sympathies are with the entire Guernsey family and requested privacy.