Arizona: Prayer service held for fallen firefighters

By Paul Nelson
Posted Jul 5, 2013
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Clergy (L to R): The Rev. Mark Moline, rector; the Rev. Richard Lassiter, assisting priest; and the Rev. Kimball Arnold, deacon. Photo: David Barnard/St. Luke’s.

[St. Luke’s Episcopal Church] The 19 fallen Granite Mountain Hotshot firefighters were honored Tuesday, July 2, at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Prescott, Arizona. The Paul Crowell Memorial Chapel was nearly filled to capacity with 54 people attending the moving service. Led by the Rev. Mark Moline, rector, the Rev. Richard Lassiter, assisting priest, and the Rev. Kimball Arnold, deacon, the names of all the fallen were read aloud, followed by the ringing of the church bell, one peal for each of the deceased. The Great Litany, a Gospel Reading, and Holy Eucharist comprised the remainder of the service.

The flag flies at half-staff outside of St. Luke’s in Prescott to honor the fallen Hotshot crew. Photo: David Barnard/St. Luke’s.

The flag flies at half-staff outside of St. Luke’s in Prescott to honor the fallen Hotshot crew. Photo: David Barnard/St. Luke’s.

Even though the brave firefighters lost their lives in Yarnell, a few miles away, the Hotshots lived in Prescott. The Doce Fire occurred two weeks ago on Granite Mountain, which is eight miles north of Prescott. Several members of St. Luke’s lived very close to that fire, and they give credit to the 19 fallen Hotshots who played a key role in helping stop that fire before any homes were destroyed. For many of these members, the memorial service was very personal and emotional.

During the service, the following prayer was read:

The Hotshot’s Prayer
When I am called to duty, Lord,
to fight the roaring blaze,
please keep me safe and strong.
I may be here for days.

Be with my fellow crewmembers,
as we hike up to the top.
Help us cut enough line,
for this blaze to stop.

Let my skills and hands
be firm and quick.
Let me find those safety zones,
As we hit and lick.

For if this day on the line,
I should lose my life,
Lord, bless my Hotshot Crew,
my children and my wife.

Pat Huston, IHC wife
(Copyright 2002)


Comments (5)

  1. Rev. Ann McLemore says:

    I’m so very, very sorry for the losses, pain, and destruction you all have suffered. I grew up in Phoenix, attended summer camps in Prescott, and continue to hold those hurt and mourning in my prayers. Thank you for their service and sacrifice. Tomorrow’s 10 am Eucharist will be in honor of those lost.

    The Rev. Ann McLemore
    Rector
    St. Giles’ Episcopal Church
    Pinellas Park, FL

    Pinellas Park F.D. Chaplain

  2. Sam Robertson says:

    I too morn these brave men! and pray for their families and especially the children. My Dad, James C. Robertson, was a federal firefighter here in Alabama.

    Sam Robertson
    1LT Infantry, Viet Nam
    Prattville, AL

    St. MarksEpiscopal Church

  3. Pam lynch says:

    Why was it so important to list the clergy officiating and not the names of the 19 fallen firefighters?

  4. Kathleen Dubois says:

    Thoughts and prayers go out to those lost and those they left behind.

  5. The Rev. Al Minor says:

    I personally know the risks and dangers of the wildfire. Neither the arduous training nor the careful preparations for this work by the teams and their leaders can totally assure them of their safety. This tragedy leaves not only a painful loss but a continuing gap in the many lives of their families and friends. The lives of those lost should be marked as heroes trying to protect the lives of others.
    God bless those who bring personal support and continuing care for their families and children.

Comments are closed.