The memorial service for the 19 firefighters killed during the Yarnell Hills Fire drew thousands to Prescott, Ariz. on Tuesday. Included in the attendees were five Texas A&M Forest Service (TFS) Honor Guard members who paid their respects to the fallen heroes. The firefighters from the Granite Mountain Hotshot crew died June 30. According the National Fire Protection Association, the wildfire caused the largest loss of U.S. firefighters since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
“Twelve of the 19 Hotshot firefighters served in Texas during the 2012 fires in Davis Mountains,” said Texas A&M Forest Service Director Tom Boggus. “It was a tough day for everyone, but well worth the trip to support the families and the firefighting family.”
The TFS Honor Guard provides leadership in difficult times, and comfort to the fallen firefighter’s family and colleagues; representing the highest ideals of duty, respect and integrity. The TFS Honor Guard honors the fallen by appropriately paying tribute and honor to the memory of our employees and the fire service who have given the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty protecting others and our natural resources.
Honor Guards are a long standing tradition in the fire and law enforcement communities to honor fallen comrades. TFS began the development of an Honor Guard in late 2010, having served unofficially since then, and were fully uniformed in May 2013. Today, should the need arise, they stand ready to answer the call.
The TFS Honor Guard is made up of six members. They are selected through an application process and commit to not less than 2 years of service.