Friday, May 3, 2013

We Will Never Forget

Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center logo

Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center (adapted from "Two More Chains - Spring 2013")

In 1994, the wildland fire community lost 14 of our brothers and sisters to Colorado’s South Canyon Fire. (A total of 38 wildland firefighters died in the line of duty that year.)

In response to this tragic season, a private company was commissioned in 1995 to study the wildland fire safety culture. Their 1998 TriData Phase III report recommended that the wildland fire community create a lessons learned center. In 2002,  the Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center (LLC) was established in Tucson, AZ. Last year marked LLC's 10th anniversary. To honor the "South Canyon 14," LLC has changed their logo.

The new LLC logo has 14 stars surrounding the central, bigger star. These 14 stars represent the "South Canyon 14"—forever watching over us. The larger, central star represents the wildland fire community.
Wildland Firefighter Foundation

Wildland Firefighter's Foundation (information below taken from WFF's website)

The Wildland Firefighter Foundation honors those who have been killed in the course of protecting our lands, our homes and our property. The Foundation's purpose and mission is intimately linked to this concept. It is charged with maintaining the national monument located at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise, Idaho. The Wildland Firefighters National Monument represents a physical manifestation of the honor and gratitude that the Foundation expresses.

When a death occurs, the Wildland Firefighter Foundation presents a statue to the family. Those statues are from us, the wildland community of interagency firefighters, vollies, and excellent private sector firefighters, and supporters - from us, provided by money we all raised with fundraisers like Ken's Run, raffles, auctions, or donated via our Wildland Firefighter Foundation's 52 Club members or our general fund.

The statues are tangible evidence of our wildland firefighter community's love and respect for our fallen brothers and promise of support for their families.

Our statues are our runners' fundraising steps; the strain of our fire crews' uphill strides, bump; the pulaski's cuts; the chainsaw's roar; the rappeller's descent, the smokejumpers' leap; the sweat and smell of our brows, pits, and feet; the long, hot smoke-filled days and nights... the elements of the wilderness, including fire.
View a tribute to those taken from us way too soon at Wildland Firefighter Memorial website.

We will never forget.

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