5 Southland Natives Among 19 Firefighters Killed In Ariz. Wildfire
LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) – Five of 19 firefighters killed Sunday in a Arizona wildfire were from Southern California, CBS2 confirmed Wednesday.
Kevin Woyjeck, son of Los Angeles County Fire Captain Joe Woyjeck, was killed in the fast-moving Yarnell Fire in central Arizona, the LACFD said.
The 21-year-old Granite Mountain Hotshot Crew member was a former LACFD Explorer and worked as an EMT for Care Ambulance Service, Fire Inspector Tony Akins said.
Grant McKee, also 21, grew up in Costa Mesa and attended Newport Harbor High School before moving to Arizona to become a Hotshot. His 23-year-old cousin, Robert Caldwell, was also killed in the blaze.
Andrew Ashcraft, 29, had lived in Orange and Garden Grove. He leaves behind a wife and four young children.
Ashcraft sent what may be the last image of the elite fire crew before they were overcome by flames. He also texted his wife: “I think I’m going to be out here a while on this one.”
The sole survivor of the tragedy, 21-year-old Brendan McDonough, is from Oceanside.
McDonough was serving as a lookout on a hillside warned the other members of his hotshot crew that the fire had changed direction due to shifting winds.