Honor Escort for the Granite Mountain 19

Granite Mountain Hotshots' Honor Escort

The 19 members of the Granite Mountain Hotshots that died on the Yarnell Hill Fire June 30 were escorted back to Prescott today, closer to their home base. They were moved from the medical examiner’s office in Phoenix to the medical examiner’s office in Prescott, a distance of approximately 100 miles. A helicopter was circling overhead. The first part of the ground escort was about 20 officers on motorcycles.

These first three photos were taken on Highway 89 five miles north of Yarnell, Arizona.

Honor Escort, motorcycle officers
Honor Escort, motorcycle officers

A few vehicles after the bikes was a Granite Mountain Hotshots’ crew carrier.

Honor Escort, Granite Mountain Hotshots
Honor Escort, Granite Mountain Hotshots’ crew carrier and the 19 hearses.

And then the 19 hearses, each with a sign in the window identifying the Hotshot inside.

Granite Mountain Hotshots' Honor Escort
Hearses for the Granite Mountain Hotshots
Yarnell Hill Fire, honor escort, APS cranes
Yarnell Hill Fire-7-7-2013-Arizona Public Service company cranes with flags draped wait for the procession of hearses carrying the 19 fallen firefighters travels through Yarnell on highway 89 Sunday afternoon, on its way to Prescott.
Photo by Tom Tingle/The Arizona Republic. Used with permission.

A memorial service for the Granite Mountain 19 will be held in Prescott Tuesday. We will remain in the area reporting on this historic event.

The first three photos were taken by Bill Gabbert.

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Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, he continues to learn, and strives to be a Student of Fire.

4 thoughts on “Honor Escort for the Granite Mountain 19”

  1. I really felt sad about their passing but this is really a great way to honor them. I wish I could’ve been part of the team that honored them because I really look up to them as brave heroes who unselfishly gave up their lives to save thousands.

  2. I got to thinking this morning about the huge crowds in Prescott and the influx of firefighters from all over. The Prescott newspaper ran a piece thanking (with amazement) the dozens of fire departments and police departments from all over the state who sent reinforcements to their town. Brotherhood for sure.

    Then I got to thinking about someone who should be thanked and probably won’t be. Can you even begin to imagine the horror and awfulness of conducting those 19 autopsies? It makes my knees feel rubbery. I’m sending them a card of thanks.

    Maricopa County Medical Examiner
    Forensic Science Center
    701 West Jefferson
    Phoenix, AZ 85007
    Ph: 602-506-3322

  3. Bill – many thanks for making the sacrifices needed to be at Prescott for the next few days; it’s good to know that we can get the facts straight from an experienced firefighter rather than from the media. We appreciate your effort!


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