Sunday, June 30, 2013

Unspeakably tragic

Nineteen firefighters have been killed in an Arizona wildfire.

Our prayers are with their families.


  1. OMG

    My eyes are squirting tears.

    It's the first I'd heard of this.

    Oh Lord.


  2. Such an overwhelming, horrific loss.

    It's impossible to imagine.

    Just Me

  3. My husband was a firefighter for 33 years, and recently took a temporary position as an Interim Chief because of a sudden, local need. The fire danger here is very high and we're having a heat wave. I told him this morning to keep his men safe and kissed him goodbye. I can't even imagine...

    1. I hear you.

      Mine is a former firefighter...from Arizona, no less.

      This stuff always hits too close to home.

      Life can change in a heartbeat.

      Keeping a good thought for your husband and his crews.


  4. I have not seen any reports that this Hot Shot crew had large air tanker support to back them up. Now the news is saying that there is helicopter and fixed wing air attack, but I don't think that there were any fixed wing assets near when they needed the help.

    Our good friends in DC have been trimming air attack for years to dispose of large air tankers.


  5. I was at work when this happened, and due to the nature of my work I knew about it before it hit the news. Our first concern was whether any member of the six departments we serve were involved.

    The fatalities occurred very early in this fire. It was day three, and the wind kicked up, blowing the fire from 300 acres in the morning to 2000 by afternoon. A number of additional assets, including a large air tanker were "on order" but had not yet arrived or been deployed. It sounds as though the wind direction was so sudden and so dramatic that there would have been no time for anyone not already on scene to help. Whether or not additional assets being used might have changed the character of the fire right where the hotshots were enough to make a difference...jeez, who knows. I'm sure this will be debated endlessly and probably with few concrete conclusions.

    In the end all that matters is there are 19 families: wives, girlfriends, mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, and not a few young children who have suffered a wrenching, horrific, inconsolable loss. I think of that community, and that department, and I can't begin to imagine the grief.

    May God comfort them.

    Jeff - Tucson