Procession brings home fallen Ariz. firefighters

Procession brings home fallen Ariz. firefighters

Updated:
Courtesy Matthew DeYoung Courtesy Matthew DeYoung
PHOENIX -

The bodies of the fallen firefighters were brought to Phoenix on Monday, where the Maricopa County medical examiner performed autopsies and the cause of death was ruled accidental.

It's said the 19 suffered burns and breathing problems.

The Honor Guard performed a short ceremony inside the medical examiner's officer for each fallen firefighter.

The emotion when they left the building and the procession started was overwhelming for both first responders and valley residents who came out to pay tribute.

A lone black hearse led the procession.

In the back ground, first responders and fellow firefighters saluted.

"We're here to make sure that we are here for them, for their families and to pay our respects," said Phoenix Fire Capt. Larry Nunez.

One by one, the Prescott Hotshots who lost their lives one week ago Sunday left Phoenix.

The names of each man were displayed for all to see.

"You can't even describe it. It's so heartbreaking. I feel so bad for their families," said Angela Hallums, a valley resident.  

The procession was greeted by huge crowds, American flags and gratitude for the heroes who fought the Yarnell Hill wildfire.

"I want them all to know how much we appreciate their sacrifice, that they're going to be remembered," said Brandy Baron, a valley resident.

Most valley residents FOX 10 spoke to told us that they didn't know the fallen firefighters personally, but felt it was important to come out to honor them and their families.

"None of it's easy. Everybody knoWs that it's a dangerous job. The guys do it, but you never expect anything like that," said Ken Foster, a retired firefighter.

Tankers followed the hearses throughout the procession.

Phoenix Police motorcycles and fire trucks from several agencies also joined in a tribute to the heroes who paid the ultimate price to keep everyone safe.
    
"Thank you for trying to help us," said Hudson Hallums, a valley resident.

Some of the fallen will be brought back to Phoenix after the memorial Tuesday and flown to their respective homes outside Arizona.

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