LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — A Little Rock Fire Department battalion chief has died while commanding crews at a structure fire.

41-year-old Battalion Chief Edward Karriem was found unresponsive in his command vehicle.

The cause of his death is unknown at this time.

19 responders were on the scene of the fire, at 9925 Stardust Trail.

Just before 11:00 a.m. fire crews were called to the scene, and were able to contain the fire in about 30 minutes.

Chief Delphone Hubbard reports that during firefighting and overhaul procedures, Battalion Chief Karriem was located in his vehicle.

Fire crews performed CPR and MEMS transported him in critical condition to Baptist Hospital where he was later pronounced deceased.

The medical examiner is working to determine the cause of his death.

“Our hearts are heavy with grief here in the Little Rock Fire Department due to the sudden loss of a rising star in the firefighting profession,” Chief Hubbard said.

“Battalion Chief Edward Karriem made a huge contribution to this department and the Little Rock community. The men and women of the Little Rock Fire Department extend our thoughts and prayers to Mrs. Denise Karriem and their four daughters.”

Mayor Frank Scott, Jr. has also expressed his condolences.

“I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of Battalion Chief Karriem,” Mayor Scott said. “He was a stellar leader and beloved by his Little Rock Fire Department family.

I extend sincere condolences to Mrs. Karriem, his brother, LRFD Engineer Joshua Karriem, and their family on behalf of the City of Little Rock. We are forever grateful and indebted to him for his service to our city.”

In a release, L. Lamor Williams says Chief Karriem faithfully served this city and the Division of Fire Services for 17 years.

“Our sincere prayers are extended to his family, loved ones and friends,” Williams said.