Sutter County firefighters part of dangerous mutual aid in Southland fires

Firefighters and peace officers escort the hearse which removed the body of a 32-year-old San Diego firefighter who died while battling the huge blaze called the Thomas Fire in Ventura County on Thursday. Fire fighters from Sutter and Yuba counties have responded mutual aid to fires in the Southland.

When news came of a firefighter killed while battling the Thomas Fire in Ventura County, we held our collective breath. There are firefighters from both Sutter and Yuba counties who have been dispatched mutual aid to fires in Ventura, Los Angeles, and San Diego counties, just as there were firefighters from the Southland dispatched mutual aid when there were fires in Loma Rica and other Northern California locations in October.

While we are relieved the dead firefighter was not part of the local mutual aid contingent, we mourn with the first responders from throughout California the death of one of their own. The firefighter was identified as a 32-year-old CalFire Engineer from San Diego, father of a two-year-old girl, whose wife is pregnant with their second child.

Firefighters and peace officers daily put their lives on the line. We know some will lose their lives in the line of duty. We should never take that for granted.