Tragedy teaches lessons

MAKING THE TRIP–Roth family and friends at Storm King Mountain in Colorado. This is the 25th year since 14 firefighters were lost in a blaze that continues to teach fire managers how to conduct their dangerous jobs more safely. Roger Roth of L’Anse was killed in the South Canyon Fire. L-r, Dan Buckley who worked with Roger, Staci Roth and husband Jim in back, Wally and Carol Roth, center, and Mike Roth at right. Jim has made it his work to design safer firefighting equipment.

by Barry Drue
Twenty-five years has not diminished the loss and grief faced by the family and friends of 14 wild land firefighters killed in a fire blow-up on Storm King Mountain in Colorado. The toll included smoke jumpers from McCall ID, and among those who jumped in and perished on July 6, 1994, was then 30 year-old Roger Roth of L’Anse. That day changed many lives forever, including those of family and friends of the lost firefighters, and the entire wildland fire community. The South Canyon Fire has served as a training tool for firefighters to do their dangerous jobs safer and more effectively. To read more, subscribe to the L’Anse Sentinel online, or buy a print copy at our local retailers.