Archive for July 8th, 2013

Yarnell fire claims 19 hotshot firefighters (more) has an article describing the trip home for the 19 hotshot firefighters who lost their lives fighting the Yarnell Fire in Arizona last week.

PHOENIX – Nineteen firefighters killed in a wildfire a week ago went home for the last time on Sunday, their bodies traveling in individual white hearses in a somber caravan for 125 miles through Arizona cities and towns.

The nearly five-hour-long procession began near the state Capitol in Phoenix, went through the town where the Granite Mountain Hotshots were killed and ended in the mountain community of Prescott, where they lived and will be laid to rest this week.

Thousands of people from across the state and beyond stood patiently in triple-digit temperatures in Phoenix, lined highways and overpasses along the route, and flooded the roads of downtown Prescott to pay their respect to the 19, whose deaths are the greatest loss of life for firefighters since 9/11.

They included fellow firefighters, the men’s family members, complete strangers and residents of Yarnell, the small town they died trying to save.

Those along the procession cried, they saluted, they held their hands over their hearts.

“It’s overwhelming to watch this slow procession of 19 hearses,” said a tearful Bill Morse, a Flagstaff fire captain who has been stationed in Prescott for a week helping Prescott fire deal with the tragedy. “The ceremonious air of it all. It’s heartbreaking.”

In downtown Prescott, a bustling and sometimes-rowdy area filled with bars and other businesses known as Whiskey Row grew eerily quiet as the hearses drove by, essentially stopping all activity for several minutes.

Many along the route carried American flags and signs that read, “Courageous, selfless, fearless, beloved,” “Yarnell remembers” and simply, “Heroes.”

Motorcycle escorts, honor guard members, and firefighting trucks accompanied the 19 hearses along the route.

In both Phoenix and Prescott, the procession drove under giant American flags hoisted above the street with the raised ladders of two firefighter trucks. Bagpipes played as crowds were hushed silent by the enormity of the loss.

A red and white DC-3 airplane used for wildland firefighting released long purple and pink ribbons overhead with each firefighter’s name on them; the ribbons drifted slowly down to the earth just before the hearses came to a stop outside the Yavapai County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Inside each hearse were the American flags that were draped over the men’s bodies at the site of their deaths in Yarnell. The flags have been with them since and will be until they’re buried. After that, the flags will be given to their families.

Family members of the firefighters watched the procession in private, away from the public and members of the media, as it passed by a massive makeshift memorial outside the fire station where the men were based in Prescott. The memorial includes hundreds of personal messages, pictures of the men, American flags, and variations on the number 19 — 19 water bottles, 19 shovels, 19 toy fire trucks surrounding a stuffed Teddy bear.

Since their fellow firefighters arrived at the scene where they were killed, the fallen firefighters have not been alone, a tradition among those in the profession in the U.S.

“Since they were discovered, they have never been out of the presence of a brother firefighter,” said Paul Bourgeois, a Phoenix-area fire chief who is acting as a spokesman in Prescott for the firefighters’ families. “From the time they were taken to the medical examiner in Phoenix, while they’re at the medical examiner’s office, when they are received in a funeral home — there will always be a brother firefighter on site with them until they are interred.

“That’s something people don’t realize. We never leave your side,” he said of the tradition. “It’s a comfort to the survivors, whether they’re families or fellow firefighters.”

The firefighters were killed a week ago in the Yarnell Hill fire, sparked by lightning on June 28. Crews were closing in on full containment after the fire destroyed more than 100 homes in Yarnell and burned about 13 square miles. The town remained evacuated but residents were expected to be allowed to return home on Monday.

The crew of Hotshots was working to build a fire line between the blaze and Yarnell when erratic winds suddenly shifted the fire’s direction,

The complete article with a video segment is HERE.

Memorial T-shirts are being sold to benefit the families of the 19 firefighters who perished.

From Image Apparel Solutions:

… our son is a Golden Eagle Hotshot wildland firefighter. He had interviewed with the Granite Mountain Hotshots earlier this year and met some of the crew that sadly lost their lives last week battling a fire near Prescott Arizona. This tragedy hits far too close to home, so we want to help the families of the fallen firefighters in whatever small way we can. We were able to connect with the United Phoenix Fire Fighters Association, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. They have established a fund for the families. With their support, we are selling a memorial t-shirt with all profits going specifically to these families. Please join us in showing support for the families of these brave men.

From The United Phoenix Firefighters Association:

David Leibowitz
(602) 317-1414


PHOENIX – The United Phoenix Fire Fighters Association, together with Prescott Fire Fighter’s Charities, have established a 501(c)3 relief fund to handle donations to benefit the families of the fallen killed in the Yarnell Fire.

Every penny – 100% of your tax-deductible donation – will go to benefit the families of our brothers who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Please make your individual or corporate donation at any Chase bank.

Account information:

United Phoenix Fire Fighters Association Account
Account #987218757.

If donors have any questions, they can contact the UPFFA Office at
(602) 277-1500.

For interviews or media requests, contact David Leibowitz at the above contact information.

An article HERE from the describes and illustrates conditions surrounding the burn over that occurred.

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What’s new … CFD

More on the remounting of the CFD small turret wagons:

This from Tyler Tobolt:

Photo of 6-7-6 and 6-7-3.  Also at the Location where 4-5-5 was.


Chicago Fire Department deluge wagons

CFD 6-7-3 and 6-7-6 with the turrets removed. Tyler Tobolt photo

Chicago FD 4-5-5

Paramedic Field Chief 4-5-5. Tyler Tobolt photo


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