The pilot, assigned to the 167th Airlift Wing in Martinsburg, was responding to a mutual aid call for a fire in a building on Charles Town Street when he was mortally wounded.
Investigators believe that this fire – and another one about three miles away – was intentionally ignited within 20 minutes of each other. The fires were lit between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m. and neither building was occupied.
The guard said in a press release that the military member’s name was withheld for 24 hours pending notification of the next of kin.
The West Virginia State Police Office is investigating the fire and state police, Mentioned by WV News. No further details were released.
Anyone with information on this issue is asked to call the state hotline at 1-800-233-3473. Authorities are offering a reward of up to $ 5,000 for information leading to arrest and conviction.
The fire director’s office could not be reached for further comments.