Results 1 to 4 of 4

Thread: LODD Community Mourns Fallen California Bravest

  1. #1
    Administrator Neil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    South West
    Posts
    3,296

    LODD Community Mourns Fallen California Bravest

    Community Mourns Fallen California Bravest


    Updated: 07-23-2007 05:03:02 PM

    By Danielle Samaniego and Tom Lochner
    Contra Costa Times

    Courtesy Contra Costa County Fire
    Fire Captain Matt C. Burton, 34

    Courtesy Contra Costa County Fire
    Fire Engineer Scott P. Desmond, 37


    Colleagues of two firefighters who died battling a house fire Saturday described the men as jovial go-getters who loved their jobs.

    Captain Matt Burton, 34, of Concord and Fire Engineer Scott Desmond, 37, of Brentwood, died working a house fire in the Montalvin Manor neighborhood outside of San Pablo Saturday that also claimed the lives of residents Delbert Moore, 67, and his wife, Gayle, 62.

    The firefighters' deaths are the first in the line of duty for the Contra Costa County Fire Protection District.

    "They were both guys that when they worked the station for their shifts, you were excited that they were there," said Battalion Chief Dave George, who knew both men. "They were upbeat and full of laughter, but they were all business when the bell went off. These guys would go all out every time when it called for it . . . They were young and excited about their job and really couldn't wait to go to their next call."

    Investigations are under way into the cause of the fire and the accident that claimed the four lives, George said. He had no further details Sunday. Cal Fire, the state fire marshal's office, and the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives along with the county district's arson investigation team are all involved in the investigations.

    Both men were working out of the San Pablo station when the call came in at 1:43 a.m. Saturday about a house fire at 149 Michele Drive in unincorporated San Pablo, county fire officials reported. The men were trapped inside the burning home as they tried to rescue the Moores.

    Desmond was exactly the kind of person colleagues wanted around during any crisis, friends said Sunday.

    "If you worked with Scott on an emergency, you didn't have to keep an eye on him or anything like that, he would cover you in a hectic situation," said fire Capt. Bill Giles, who worked with Desmond at Antioch Fire Station 88 and was at Desmond's home Sunday.

    Desmond was filling in at the San Pablo station for another firefighter who was on vacation.

    "He was very competent and intelligent, but he was a good friend more than anything . . . not just to me, but to everybody he cared for," Giles said.

    Desmond is survived by his wife, Carolyn, and a 17-month old son, Tyler. Burton is survived by his wife and two children.

    A woman contacted at Burton's home Sunday declined to comment.

    Station 70 is among the busiest in the district, George said, which is what he believed drew Burton to the post there.

    "He loved working here at 70. As a paramedic he saw lots of trauma calls," said George, who watched Burton work his way up from a student worker in the district's training division to captain. "He was the kind of guy who was very excited about his job as a paramedic ... he had just called me a while ago and told me about a particular incident where he saved a person's life recently."

    George also described Burton as a "big-time family guy" who would jump at the opportunity to get home to play with his children.

    Plans for memorial services are in the works, said fire district spokeswoman Emily Hopkins.

    "Today all of our firefighters are mourning and trying to pull themselves together over this sad incident," Hopkins said Sunday. "And besides our firefighters, we do have sympathy for the civilians that lost their lives in that fire."

    Delbert Moore, a retired mechanic and avid gunsmith, and Gayle Moore, who worked at Manson Construction Co. of Richmond, had lived in the home for years, according to neighbors.

    Gayle Moore knitted lap robes for patients in convalescent hospitals and comfort caps for cancer patients in her spare time, was active in a local CB radio club and was about to receive her 40-year pin for being a member of the Eagles Auxiliary in San Pablo. She had also served as a past president for both the Eagles Aerie 3028 Auxiliary and state chapters, according to Eagles Auxiliary member Shirley Barnes.

    The Moores are survived by a daughter and two sons, family friends said.

    On Sunday, solemn-faced firefighters from several agencies were at the home, where all that was left was the charred frame of the house. There was debris on the front lawn, as well as a growing memorial with flowers, red heart-shaped balloons, a large American flag and a small stuffed animal Dalmatian.

    Donations to the families of Burton and Desmond can be made to Local 1230 Widows and Orphans Fund, 112 Blue Ridge Drive, Martinez, California, 94553.
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...6&sectionId=39
    photos below

    Courtesy Contra Costa County Fire
    Fire Captain Matt C. Burton, 34

  2. #2
    Administrator Neil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    South West
    Posts
    3,296

    LODD Fire Engineer Scott P. Desmond, 37

    Courtesy Contra Costa County Fire
    Fire Engineer Scott P. Desmond, 37

    Donations to the families of Burton and Desmond can be made to Local 1230 Widows and Orphans Fund, 112 Blue Ridge Drive, Martinez, California, 94553.
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...6&sectionId=39

  3. #3
    Administrator Neil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    South West
    Posts
    3,296

    Memorial Services

    Memorial services have been scheduled Friday, July 27th in Concord for two Contra Costa firefighters who gave their lives in the line of duty.

    Captain Matt Burton and Engineer Scott Desmond, died early Saturday morning while attempting to rescue two people from a destructive house fire in San Pablo. Burton and Desmond were the first traumatic line of duty deaths in Contra Costa County in at least three decades.

    The memorial, which will include an apparatus procession and full firefighter honors, will be held at the Sleeptrain Concord Pavilion on Friday, July 27, 2007. The service will begin at 11:00am, and the public is asked to arrive by 10 a.m. Sleeptrain Pavillion at Concord is located at 2000 Kirker Pass Road, Concord, CA 94521.

    Agencies participating in the apparatus procession Friday, July 27 are asked to please contact John Viera at 925-567-6996 to advise the number of personnel/equipment you will be sending and to receive more detailed information.


    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

  4. #4
    Administrator Neil's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    South West
    Posts
    3,296

    Fallen California Firefighters Remembered

    Fallen California Firefighters Remembered


    Updated: 07-30-2007 09:22:56 AM


    JOHN SIMERMAN
    Inside Bay Area (California)



    CONCORD -- The slow beat of a lone snare drum. The swift whisper of a thousand sleeves raised in salute. A stage framed by a pair of hanging fire coats, the names of the fallen sewn in fluorescent yellow letters. A wife's sobs echoing over the bagpipe wail of "Amazing Grace."

    And, when it was over, a line of firefighters in dark blue, sniffling or pressing sunglasses over damp eyes as they rose up the stairway aisles. Images and sounds of sorrow filled the Sleep Train Pavilion on Friday as firefighters from across the state, local paramedics, deputies and grieving relatives honored two Contra Costa firefighters, husbands and fathers who were killed a week ago in a house blaze near San Pablo.

    More than 4,000 people, most in dress uniforms, filled the rows of concert seating beneath the wide pavilion awning as Capt. Matt Burton and Engineer Scott Desmond were remembered for their humor, family devotion and an unshrinking dedication that sent them into a burning house early Saturday morning to try and save a couple.

    "They didn't hesitate. They didn't flinch. They rushed in to save Delbert and Gayle Moore, God rest their souls," said Harold Schaitberger, general president of the InternationalAssociation of Fire Fighters. Burton, 34, and Desmond, 37, became the first line-of-duty deaths in the 43-year history of the Contra Costa Fire District, officials said.

    Delbert and Gayle Moore, who lived in the home on Michele Drive in unincorporated Montalvin Manor, also died in the blaze. Some of the couple's relatives attended the two-hour memorial, which followed a morning procession of some 130 fire engines from across Northern California and dozens of other emergency vehicles -- lights flashing, sirens off -- east from Sunvalley Mall.

    Hundreds of spectators lined the route, many of them hoisting American flags. Later, pictures of the two smiling men appeared on large screens above the pavilion stage as relatives, friends and colleagues described the two men as equal parts fun-loving and committed.

    "He always looked at you like he knew something that you didn't," joked Robert Desmond of his brother's trademark impish grin.

    "Looking up on that stage I saw three images -- two pictures of the guys and the American flag -- and they all represented the same thing: courage, honor and sacrifice," said Contra Costa Battalion Chief Dave George.

    "These guys did the ultimate sacrifice."

    Desmond, a native of New Rochelle, N.Y., joined the district in 1999 and was filling in on Engine 70 in San Pablo the day of the blaze.

    He leaves behind his wife, Carolyn and a 17-month-old son. Burton, a Mt. Diablo High graduate and 10-year district veteran, rose to captain in February and transferred to Engine 70. He is survived by his wife, Chantel, and two young children. Family members sat in the front rows Friday, backed by rows of firefighters from across the state -- a self-described extended family.

    "If we could rewind the tape, turn back the clock to last Saturday, all of us here would want to be on Michele Drive, doing what we could do to not be here today," said Lou Paulson, a Contra Costa fire captain and president of California Professional Firefighters.

    The deaths were a sobering reminder of the dangers they can face even on seemingly "routine" fires, firefighters said. "After the incident I went home and hugged my child harder," said Newark firefighter Dave O'Brien. "All those cliches are all true. But you can't dwell on it."

    Firefighter Vito Impastato, a close friend of Burton, said he went out on a call from Station 81 in Antioch this week that "wound up not much of anything," but sent his heart racing. "We bottle this stuff up," said Impastato.

    "I think a lot of people will be dealing with this for a long time." George, the battalion chief, called it the deepest sorrow he has seen in his 24 years in the district. He said the district has provided counseling to firefighters in the wake of the deaths.

    "We're much stronger at what they did on Saturday than what we're doing today" at the memorial, he said. Contra Costa firefighters choked up as Tony Miller, who drove Engine 70 to the deadly fire, rang a brass fire bell on stage -- a ceremonial farewell for line-of-duty deaths.

    Up the aisles, two bright red fire engines sat parked on a walkway on either side of the stage: Engine 88, from Desmond's station, and Engine 70. As the lines of Contra Costa firefighters rose up the stairs, some stopped to touch their polished metal grab bars -- another somber tradition. Others just rubbed their eyes.

    Reach John Simerman at (925) 943-8072 or e-mail jsimerman@cctimes.com .

    photos see link below
    http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...Id=45&id=55717

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •