Links for the WIldland Fire Fighter Foundation mentioned earlier.
Yesterday I happened to be downtown and encountered the caravan of the HotShot "buggies" being returned to Station 7.
They were escorted by several law enforcement personnel and many visiting firefighter vehicles here to support out local firemen; to give them respite and to honor their brethren. I find it hard to maintain composure, tears come, I get choked up. With each slurry bomber flying directly over my house I send a prayer of gratitude. I send prayers for the loved ones. And I pray for the lone Hotshot member who survived--due to his position as Lookout---. He too, is dealing with death in a very different way, and was part of the family of Granite Mountain Hotshots.
always a bad thing when stuff like this happens. There is some comments on weather being related to the deaths. Apparently a storm cell came over the area and caused winds that changed direction and probably trapped the team, keeping them from being able to get to the safety zone they had built earlier. Possible that they were on a ridge at the time.
These people risk a lot to help out everyone, and for little pay and not much in the way of benefits. They have a heck of a job, and really get little thanks. I do know that they have a lot of pride in what they do and I am ever grateful.
If you are at all interested in what it takes to do their job and what they face in risks, read the book "Young Men and Fire" about the Mann Canyon Fire in Montana and some of the first smoke jumpers in the forest service. Our experience here in Central Oregon is shadowed by the Prineville Hotshot Memorial, for the team lost at Storm King.
Sometimes you can get the investigation report from the forest service (since we knew some of the people from the Prineville Hotshots it was not hard to get). Nobody intentionally does stupid things, but mother nature and the properties of fire are not always predictable.
Often we say that fellow skiers died doing what they loved, same in this case. Doesn't make it any easier, but I believe in what they were doing and have only thanks for those who still fight the fires and sorrow for those lost.
I am AZ local and I was in NYC all last week. Even 2000 miles away people were feeling the pain from this tragedy and I was amazed at the outpouring of support and sympathy I was seeing even in NY. These guys were/are heroes.
Annual hike up Storm King doubly poignant this year
CANYON CREEK — A quick rain had just washed through the South Canyon area west of Glenwood Springs at 8 a.m. Saturday, cooling the air and dampening the dust for the hike up to the memorials for 14 firefighters who died here 19 years ago, on July 6, 1994, fighting the Storm King Fire.
At the trailhead, about a mile east of the Canyon Creek exit off Interstate 70, a few dozen firefighters from the immediate region — Glenwood Springs, Rifle, Basalt, Aspen — and elsewhere were heading up in separate groups, some carrying on a tradition that was established when the trail was built by volunteers following the 1994 fire.
But many of the firefighters climbing the trail also were there to honor another tragedy, the Yarnell Hill fire near Phoenix, which on June 30 killed 19 members of the Granite Mountain Hotshot crew from Prescott, Ariz.
"It was 19 years ago today," mused Aspen Fire Chief Rick Balentine, who was helping to fight the Storm King Fire that year but was not at the scene when the fire, fanned by a sudden shift in the wind, suddenly blew up. "We just thought it would be a good time to pay our respects to the firefighters who died in both fires."
Read the rest of this report at PostIndependent.com
Read more:Annual hike up Storm King doubly poignant this year - The Denver Posthttp://www.denverpost.com/breakingnews/ci_23619468/annual-hike-up-storm-king-doubly-poignant-this#ixzz2YVROYtWn
Follow us:@Denverpost on Twitter|Denverpost on Facebook
I've been to the South Canyon (outside of Glenwood Springs) site a couple of times. One friend and an acquaintance died there. Here's a picture I took of my friend's site:
And here's a semi-ski related picture I took there:
Too much sadness. ^That was 19 years ago. It deeply affected a lot of people I know.
I was at the service yesterday and took some of my own pictures, here they are. Everyone did an amazing job honoring the fallen. The crew boss, Eric Marsh, for the hotshots was a close friend of my close friend. It took 20 full size buses to get the family to and from the arena. As a firefighter myself it was a lot to take in.
Panoramic I took at the front
Family arriving in buses