CARSON CITY — A memorial service will be conducted Friday in Poulsbo, Wash., for former Nevada Fire Marshal Thomas Huddleston.
Huddleston died March 22 at age 69 after a long illness.
He had served as state fire marshal between 1977 and 1987, the era when the state implemented stronger fire protection laws because of the disastrous fires at the MGM Grand and the Las Vegas Hilton.
Earlier he had spent nine years with the Las Vegas Fire Department, leading the bomb search and disposal squad.
State Fire Marshal Peter Mulvihill knew Huddleston and plans to attend the services.
He said Huddleston is well-known in state fire services because early in his career the Legislature disbanded the state fire marshal’s office for three weeks and he managed to re-establish it.
Huddleston was fire marshal at the time the state Legislature passed fire prevention regulations, including requiring sprinklers in hotels.
A Nov. 21, 1980, fire at the MGM (now Bally’s) caused 87 deaths, most because of smoke inhalation. Three months later eight people died in a human-caused fire at the Las Vegas Hilton.
After serving as state fire marshal, Huddleston became fire marshal for Corona, Calif. He became fire marshal for the Poulsbo Fire Department in 1994 and deputy chief in 2005. He retired in 2010.
Huddleston, who was born in Lexington, Ky., was an Air Force and Vietnam veteran.
He is survived by his wife, Wendy, son, Shawn Huddleston, and daughter, Jennifer Sommer.
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