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'Please join me in keeping our fallen firefighter and his loved ones in your prayers'

Firefighters from Oregon have transitioned to the Thomas Fire in Ventura County, working to protect homes from the massive blaze. All but two of the strike teams from Oregon have left the Lilac Fire and moved to the Thomas Fire, Oregon fire officials said. (Oregon Office of State Fire Marshal)

VENTURA, Calif. - A firefighter died battling the Thomas Fire, CAL FIRE said Thursday.

"The incident is still unfolding, but in this world of fast moving information, it is important to me that only factual information be shared," Chief Ken Pimlott said in a statement. "I can confirm a fatality of a CAL FIRE Engineer from the San Diego Unit has occurred."

At an afternoon press conference, Cal Fire identified the deceased as Fire Apparatus Engineer Cory Iverson, 32. He'd been with Cal Fire since 2009.

He leaves behind a wife, a 2-year-old daughter and a second daughter due this spring.

Pimlott said fire officials "are working to support the Unit and his family, who have been notified."

He said more details about what happened would be made public as they are confirmed.

"In the meantime, please join me in keeping our fallen firefighter and his loved ones in your prayers and all the responders on the front lines in your thoughts as they continue to work under extremely challenging conditions."

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