On June 30, 2013,  19 firefighters were lost while battling the Yarnell Hill fire in Arizona.  The fallen represent about 20% of Prescott’s Fire Department.  It is an unbearable loss that is difficult to absorb even in a field where danger is a part of the day-to-day job.

Every time a firefighter is lost, the flags at the National Fallen Firefighters Memorial at the National Emergency Training Center in Emmitsburg, Maryland are lowered.  In all the times I have been at that facility and all the days I have viewed the Memorial – probably a hundred days at least – the flags have always been lowered.  Unfortunately, firefighters are lost in the line of service all too often.  But it is a rare day when so many are taken by the same fire.


Today I honor the souls of the fallen with a poem by a Missouri firefighter.

By R. Hoffman, SSgt. USAF/MOANG, Firefighter,
Rosecrans Airport, St. Joseph, Missouri

Rest now my fallen brother
Lay soft your suffering back
Rest well and forever
Your memory shall not lack
Rest your tired hands
Wipe clean your weary brow
Rest with St. Florian
Your spirit now endowed
Rest here your breaking heart
We know you gave your all
Rest easy, you’ve done your part
You’ve answered your last call
Rest knowing that in God we sought
Oh Lord, watch over another who just fell
Rest assured your troubled thought
As we ring the final bell.



May they rest in peace.

Eric Marsh, 43
Andrew Ashcraft, 29
Robert Caldwell, 23
Travis Carter, 31
Dustin Deford, 24
Christopher MacKenzie, 30
Grant McKee, 21
Sean Misner, 26
Scott Norris, 28
Wade Parker, 22
John Percin, 24
Anthony Rose, 23
Jesse Steed, 36
Joe Thurston, 32
Travis Turbyfill, 27
William Warneke, 25
Clayton Whitted, 28
Kevin Woyjeck, 21
Garret Zuppiger, 27

Day one thousand four hundred and fifty-five of the new forty – obla di obla da

Ms. C

2 Responses

  1. tim haering

    Don’t ask me why, but your tribute to the fallen firefighters has brought to mind Steve Martin’s portrayal of Fire Chief Charley “CD” Bales in “Roxanne.” God rest their souls.

  2. B-dubya

    Heartbreaking 🙁 I had no idea there was a national memorial for fallen firefighters. Thank you for sharing that.

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