Former fire commissioner Harold Hairston dies at 76

- Philadelphia is mourning the loss of the city’s first African-American fire commissioner.

Harold Hairston was appointed head of the city’s fire department in 1992 by Mayor Ed Rendell.

Current mayor Jim Kenney released this statement: "I'm deeply saddened by the news of Commissioner Hairston's passing. He was a dedicated firefighter and an outstanding commissioner. He left a lasting impact on the department and our city. My thoughts and prayers are with his family."

Current fire commissioner Adam Thiel wrote: “It is with deep regret, the Philadelphia Fire Department announces the passing of former Fire Commissioner Harold Hairston. Commissioner Hairston was appointed head of the Fire Department in 1992 and served 12 years until his retirement in 2004. Circumstances of Commissioner Hairston passing are unknown at this time.”

Harold Hairston was 76.

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