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Off-duty TVF&R lieutenant dies following kitesurfing accident

Fire chief says 'Dale Johnson was a good firefighter, a good lieutenant and a good man'


A 49-year-old Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue firefighter died Thursday afternoon following a kitesurfing accident in the Pacific Ocean off the beach at Roads End State Park.

Wylie "Dale" Johnson Jr. of Dundee served as a member of the fire district for 19 years and was most recently assigned as a lieutenant with King City Fire Station 35. by: TVF&R - Lt. Dale Johnson

He was enjoying a day off, when a friend reportedly found him unresponsive in the water. Johnson's friend called 911 and attempted to revive him with CPR at the beach until paramedics arrived.

Members of North Lincoln Fire & Rescue and Pac West ambulance responded to the scene along with Lincoln City police at about 5 p.m. on July 3. Johnson was transported to Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital.

When Oregon State Police troopers arrived at the hospital, medical staff had pronounced him deceased despite lifesaving efforts at the beach by Johnson's friend, responding fire personnel and hospital emergency room staff.

Johnson started his career as a volunteer firefighter in Jackson County, Oregon. In 1995, he joined Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue as a firefighter/paramedic, and in 2006, was promoted to lieutenant.

Since 2011, Johnson was assigned to Station 35 in King City.

"Fellow firefighters said Dale loved his crew, his job, and was someone who was passionate about everything he did — be it work or play," said Cassandra Ulven, fire district spokeswoman. "He was an avid kitesurfer and enjoyed his time on the water."

His loss was immediately felt by the Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue team.

"Dale Johnson was a good firefighter, a good lieutenant and a good man," said Fire Chief Mike Duyck. "The men and women at TVF&R will miss him, and our hearts go out to his family."