Press release from the Kankakee Fire Department


Press release from the Kankakee Fire Department


December 28, 2020

For Immediate Release

The City of Kankakee Fire department acknowledges the passing of former Kankakee Fire Chief, David St. John.  St. John was 75 years of age and transitioned on December 28, 2020 at Riverside Medical Center. 

St. John was hired by the City of Kankakee Fire Department on December 2, 1968 and spent 27 years of his life working for the department.  He achieved 1st Class Fire Fighter on 12/2/1969, was promoted to Lieutenant  on 9/14/1977 and Captain on 7/14/1984. On May 3, 1993, St. John was promoted to Fire Chief before retiring on June 3, 1996. During a portion of his career, he was the Captain in charge of the Fire Prevention Bureau and served as a Fire Investigator.

Fire Chief Damon Schuldt, who was hired in 1990, remembers Chief St. John as a very intelligent person who knew a lot about the Fire Service and the City. “My first remembrance of Chief St. John was before I was hired at the Kankakee Fire Department. Then Captain St. John taught a basic Firefighter class to a group of area firefighters at the old Station 2 on Entrance Avenue in the upstairs classroom.  He was passionate about the job and wanted everyone to be the same way. If there was an issue, he would stand behind you if you were in the right," said Chief Schuldt.

Chief St. John had a degree in Fire Science Technology from Prairie State College along with numerous fire service related certifications and credentials. He also instructed many fire service classes throughout the area. He was Chairman of the Fire Science Program Advisory Board at Kankakee Community College  where he worked as an instructor, in addition to, being a member of a number of area boards or committees.   

Arrangements are pending at the Jenson Funeral Home.


The City of Kankakee is dedicated to protecting, building and nurturing the community while enhancing lives. We are a historic, vibrant, and active riverfront community. We continue to transform into an extraordinary place to dream, grow, and thrive. Embracing our diversity, we strive to be progressive, inclusive, and innovative. For more information on the City of Kankakee, please visit the website at


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