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AZ Wildfire Claims Lives of All But One in Prescott Firefighter Crew Sunday: UPDATED

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Yarnell HIll fire by Jeffery Blackburn via Facebook

UPDATE 1:00 am July 1, PDT: ABC news notes that the fire had grown to "6,000 acres as of 11:30 p.m., according to Incident Commander Mike Reichling."  Read more: click here"

UPDATE 9 pm PDT, July 1: Names of the fallen firefighters have been released.

by In Memory of Prescott Firefighters Lost 6/30/2013 Facebook page

Nineteen firefighters are dead in the biggest firefighter casualty in Arizona's history, according to ABC news

The Yarnell Hill Wildfire is blazing approximately 4 miles south of Yarnell, AZ, on Rt 89, just southwest of Prescott, AZ. The fire is believed to have been ignited by lightning. Lightning has caused several fires in the Prescott area in the past few days.

According to the Prescott Daily Courier, 18 of the fallen firefighters represent nearly the entire Granite Mountain Hotshot crew of Prescott. Only one member of the 19-member Granite Hotshot crew survived.
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All but one of the Prescott AZ Hotshots perished in the Yarnell blaze by

One other dead firefighter was from another crew, still unidentified.

Last week these firefighters successfully fought the Doce blaze, no structures nor lives were lost.  The Doce Fire is now 96% contained.

Due to extraordinary firefighter efforts, the largest measured Alligator Juniper tree in the US was saved from the Doce Fire last week. The tree is 46 feet tall and is 27 feet, 4 inches around. According to Northern Arizona University these trees can be 500 - 800 years old.

The largest Juniper tree was saved by firefighters. It is approx 14' diameter. by Doce Fire Information on Facebook
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At least half of the 500 structures in Yarnell have been destroyed in the fire,  which grew from 8 acres to 200 acres in a few hours. There is currently no containment. click here

The average age of the firefighters who perished was 22. (Note: Later information indicated that this is actually a higher number.)

Before day's end, on Sunday June 30, the In Memory of Prescott Firefighters Lost 6/30/2013 Facebook page created just a few hours earlier, had over 95,000 likes.

In Memory of Prescott Firefighters Lost 6/30/2013 Facebook Page by In Memory of Prescott Firefighters Lost 6/30/2013 Facebook Page

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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, (more...)

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