“Game of Fire” by DeShon and Haff for FireRescue Magazine

MyLostBrothersJennifer DeShon and I wrote a piece for Fire Rescue Magazine about My Lost Brothers by Brendan McDonough and his account of being the lone survivor of the Granite Mountain Crew that perished in 2013 when a brutal wildland fire claimed 19 men. This was an exciting, fascinating, and incredibly tragic story about a lost young man being accepted into a tough, tight-knit crew. I knew what was coming and still couldn’t stop reading. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in wildfires, wildland firefighting, and the legacy of sacrifice that exists in the American fire service.


You can read our thoughts and the Fire Rescue Magazine article at: http://www.firerescuemagazine.com/articles/print/volume-11/issue-10/line-of-duty-death/game-of-fire.html



Here’s a peek:

On September 11, 2001, the U.S. fire service lost 343 men–more in one incident than the U.S. military had lost in a single battle since Khe Sanh in Vietnam. Then, on June 30, 2013, 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots were killed by the Yarnell Hill Fire in Arizona. The only greater loss for the U.S. military in a single day in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan occurred when 31 special operatives were shot down by the Taliban on their way to rescue Navy Seal Marcus Luttrell. We know that story well. Books have been written about it, movies made. But we don’t know much about the Granite Mountain Hotshots. It’s time their story was told.


Jennifer DeShon has fought wildfires out West for over a decade and she brings a perspective that I don’t have on the whole experience. I really enjoyed reading My Lost Brothers and writing this article with her. Our love and support goes out to Brendan McDonough who was so young when he lost 19 of his brothers. He has succeeded with his incredible account of the Yarnell Hill Fire in keeping his fire family’s memory incandescently alive.


Stay Strong Donut!  We believe in you.




1 Comment

  • Diane Vetter says:

    To all of you who respond to this county’s wildfires, thank you. From ICS to base camp personnel to the initial attack firefighters, hand crews, prison crews, smoke jumpers, helitack, hotshots, heavy equipment operators, air ops, engine crews, water tanker guys and the myriad of others who go out and do the work you do. It takes a small city to put out these fires. I admire and salute you all.

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