1 firefighter killed, 2 seriously hurt in San Antonio fire

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One firefighter died in a massive strip mall fire on the northwest side of San Antonio Thursday night, near Ingram Park Mall.

"We also ask that you pray for our other brothers also injured in this blaze and that they heal quickly", the statement said.

Firefighters initially entered the building as a search and rescue because they did not know if people were stuck inside but when conditions worsened inside, Deem was unable to escape, Hood said at the press conference. San Antonio Fire Chief Charles Hood said as his crews were inside, the structure collapsed, trapping Deem.

The second firefighter, who was part of the rescue team, was taken to University Hospital in Priority 2 condition. More than 60 fire crews responded.

As of 11 p.m. sources said one firefighter was possibly unaccounted for more than an hour after firefighters started fighting the blaze.

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Hood told reporters that it was a "very rough decision" to leave a firefighter behind but the department could have lost up to 20 firefighters if it didn't shift gears and "go defensive".

Two firefighters went missing during the evacuation, Hood said.

"We are anticipating both of these firefighters are going to be OK, but we're asking for your prayers", Hood said.

About 100 firefighters saluted the ambulance that carried Deem to the Bexar County Medical Examiner's office early Friday morning.

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