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Wayne Independent - Honesdale, PA
  • Officer dies in tragic mishap

  • A police officer and volunteer firefighter died early Saturday morning trying to help someone who had been involved in a car wreck.
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  • — A police officer and volunteer firefighter died early Saturday morning trying to help someone who had been involved in a car wreck.
    Daniel "J.J." Lomax, 55, of Factoryville, was electrocuted when he stepped out of his car on Sawmill Road in Salem Township.
    According to the Pennsylvania State Police, at around 3 a.m., a vehicle being driven by Angel Cortez, 20, of Honesdale, was traveling east on the road about a 1-1/2 miles east of State Road 191.
    The vehicle traveled off the left side of the road for approximately 48 feet and struck a utility pole. Police said the car then caught fire and was fully engulfed.
    Police are unsure how Cortez exited the car but the driver was located approximately 15 feet behind the vehicle.
    Police said Lomax came across the accident and exited his vehicle to render assistance to Cortez. However, he stepped on live power lines which were down and was instantly killed.
    Wayne County Coroner Edward Howell listed the cause of death as electrocution and it was ruled accidental.
    Cortez suffered from severe burns and was transported by helicopter to the Lehigh Valley Medical Center.
    Trooper T.J. Branning is investigating the accident. Trooper John Bogarowski was on the scene as well as Trooper Brian Rickard, officials from Hamlin Fire & Rescue, Hamlin Ambulance and PPL.
    According to the "Law Enforcement Today" website, Lomax worked as a part-time officer in Mayfield, Forest City and Great Bend. He was also a volunteer firefighter for several departments in the region.
    Lomax was deputy chief of the Factoryville Fire Department and also volunteered for the Meredith Hose Company.
    He came to Factoryville from the Philadelphia area as a teen to live with a foster family, according to the website.
    Lomax left northeast Pennsylvania about a decade ago and worked as a police officer in Maryland before returning to this region two years ago.
    "He was dependable. Everybody liked him. Everybody knew him," said Forest City Police Chief Paul Lukus. "He'd go out of his way to help you. If I needed him here in two hours, regardless of what he had going on, he would be there."
    Missing person information sought
    Officials from the Honesdale Barracks of the Pennsylvania State Police are searching for a 63-year-old man who went missing last week.
    According to police, Joseph Mulligan was a resident of the Woodview Terrace Personal Care Home. He walked away from the facility on June 18. The facility is located in Dreher Township in Wayne County.
    Mulligan is a white male, 5-feet, nine-inches tall, 148 pounds, grey hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing light blue pants and a black knit sweater.
    Page 2 of 2 - Anyone who might have information about Mulligan is asked to call the PSP at 570-253-7126.
    Trooper Keith Brislin is the investigating officer.
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