On July 5, firefighters and smoke jumpers were working together to create fire lines to contain the blaze, areas free of material that could fuel the fire and over which it was hoped the fire would not jump. On July 6, twenty Hotshots from Prineville, Oregon arrived in Glenwood to assist with the battle. That afternoon, a dry cold front with heavy winds passed through the area, fanning the flames and causing the blaze to jump the fire lines. By 4:00 PM, the fire had “spotted” beyond the fireline and below the firefighters’ location to the west and began to race towards them up the steep, densely vegetated terrain. Twelve firefighters were unable to outrun the blaze and perished. Two more helitack firefighters were also killed as they tried to flee to the northwest.
We honor the brave men and women who died that day protecting the homes and property of Glenwood Springs residents include:
Prineville Hotshots: Kathi Beck, Tami Bickett, Scott Blecha, Levi Brinkley, Douglas Dunbar, Terri Hagen, Bonnie Holtby, Rob Johnson and Jon Kelso
Missoula Smokejumper: Don Mackey
McCall Smokejumpers: Roger Roth and Jim Thrash
Helitack Crew: Rob Browning and Richard Tyler
There is a memorial at Two Rivers Park to honor each of the fallen firefighters from the Storm King Mountain Fire. It is a stopping place for firefighter crews passing through Glenwood Springs either en route to a fire or returning home. Visitors can also hike the rugged Storm King Memorial Trail; it is the same trail used by the doomed firefighters.