Battalion Chief M. F. Shanahan Dead

Battalion Chief M. F. Shanahan Dead

The Late Chief M. F. Shanahan

Battalion Fire Chief, Michael F. Shanahan, aged 62 years, in command of the Sixth Battalion, on the North Side, at one time Chief and one of the oldest commanding officers of the Pittsburgh Fire Department, died suddenly on Sunday evening, June 1st, about 6:00 P. M., in Battalion Quarters, from a cerebral hemorrhage.

Chief Shanahan, on the day of his death, had answered an alarm for a small fire in a three – story frame dwelling, and after returning to quarters, complained of feeling ill. He rested himself on a couch in his office. Sometime after retiring to his office, members of Engine Company No. 42, calling to inquire how he was feeling, found the Chief lying on the floor in an unconscious condition. He was given first aid and Dr. A. F. P. Huston, city physician, was called. By the time Dr. Huston arrived, Chief Shanahan had passed away.

Chief Shanahan first joined the Fire Department of old Allegheny City, now the North Side of Pittsburgh, as a Hoseman, September 1, 1890. On September 1, 1897, he was promoted to Captain and was assigned to Truck Company B. He commanded this company until July 1, 1906, when he was promoted to Assistant Chief, and assigned to the downtown business and manufacturing district.

With the consolidation of the two cities, December 6, 1907, and the reorganization of both fire departments into one great unit, Chief Shanahan was re-appointed a District Chief and was re-assigned to his old command. On May 1, 1923, he was promoted to Chief of Department, succeeding Chief William Bennett, who retired on pension. Chief Shanahan held the position of head of department until February 16, 1926, when he retired (retirement only proved to be temporary) and was succeeded as head of the fire department by the present chief, Richard L. Smith.

After an absence of approximately four months from the department, he made application for re-instatement to the department as a battalion chief. His application for the position was approved and on June 22, 1926, he was appointed battalion chief and was assigned for duty to his old command on the North Side. Here he remained until his death.

During his entire service of over forty years as a member of the old Allegheny City Fire Department and the present department of the Greater City, Chief Shanahan proved himself an efficient and fearless fire fighter, as well as a good commanding officer. He leaves a widow, two married daughters and one son.

WM. E. PATTERSON

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