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Friends, Co-Workers Mourn Loss Of Volunteer Fire Department Medic

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CLINTON, N.C. — A medic with a Sampson County volunteer fire department was killed in a wreck while responding to a fire call Thursday night.

Bridgett Autry, 18, a two-year member of the Herring Volunteer Fire department, died in the single-vehicle wreck.

The Highway Patrol said speed will likely be ruled as the cause of the crash.

Officials said the wreck happened on Rabbit Street, just east of State Road 1335, nine miles north of Clinton.

Officials said two minutes after leaving the fire station, Autry lost control of her 1993 Chevrolet Blazer. They said she drove left of the center line and hit a ditch, struck a barn and flipped the vehicle several times in a field before being ejected from the vehicle.

Autry was reportedly driving 75 mph in a 55 mph zone. Her co-workers said Autry was never reckless and that her main goal was to help others.

"Her main goal in life was to help everybody in this community," saidCapt. Ronald Ellis of the Herring Volunteer Fire Department. "Her medical field showed that she was interested in helping others."

Autry, who was also a student at Midway High School, was pronounced dead at Sampson County Regional Medical Center in Clinton.

Chief Shannon Naylor said Autry served as a role model for others.

"She will be greatly missed. She was one of the most dedicated people we had in the department. Words cannot even describe how we feel right now," he said.