See tributes to 3 killed in SoCal firefighting helicopter crash – NBC Los Angeles

on Aug9
by | Comments Off on See tributes to 3 killed in SoCal firefighting helicopter crash – NBC Los Angeles |

Two firefighters and a helicopter pilot are being remembered for their courage following a deadly mid-air collision with another firefighting aircraft as they responded to a Southern California brush fire.

President Biden on Tuesday praised the firefighters on the front lines of wildfires in a statement expressing condolences to the crew members’ families. CAL FIRE Riverside County Chief Bill Weiser remembered the victims as “colleagues, mentors, and friends.”

Their comments are among many in tribute to 46-year-old CAL FIRE Assistant Chief Josh Bischof, 44-year-old CAL FIRE Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez, and 55-year-old pilot Tony Sousa. The three men were in a Bell 407 helicopter operating as a brush fire spotter aircraft when it collided with a water-dropping Sikorsky Skycrane Sunday in Cabazon, authorities said.

Flags at the Capitol in Sacramento were lowered to half-staff in their honor.


CalFire officially released the photos of Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez (left) and Assistant Chief Josh Bischof (right).

Here’s how the victims are being honored and remembered. Funeral arrangements were pending.

President Joe Biden

“Jill and I send our deepest condolences to the families of the helicopter pilot, and the brave California firefighters, who tragically lost their lives Sunday. Every day, firefighters run toward danger, while everyone else runs the other way, because being a firefighter is not what they do — it’s who they are. This tragedy is yet another example, of their incredible bravery.

“As wildfires have intensified in recent years, more and more firefighters have put themselves in harm’s way to defend our families and communities from out-of-control fires. That’s why my administration has invested historic funding to address the underlying causes of wildfires — like record droughts caused by climate change. We owe it to our firefighters and their families to do everything we can to prevent these dangerous fires in the first place. Three families of three brave Americans have an empty seat around the dinner table tonight, and our hearts go out to them.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom

“On behalf of all Californians, our thoughts and heartfelt sympathies are with the loved ones, friends and CAL FIRE colleagues mourning the loss of Assistant Chief Bischof, Fire Captain Rodriguez, and Pilot Sousa. This terrible tragedy is a reminder of the dangers our courageous firefighters face daily while working to keep our communities safe. We owe them our deepest respect and gratitude and will always honor their bravery and sacrifices.”

CAL FIRE/Riverside County Fire Chief Bill Weiser

“Our hearts are broken at the loss of our colleagues, mentors, and friends. Josh and Tim were exceptional firefighters
and people. We grieve with their families and loved ones, and our prayers are with them.”


“It is with great sadness that #CALFIRE shares the tragic loss of our employees who perished in a midair collision yesterday evening while fighting the Broadway fire in Riverside County. Our condolences go out to the family and friends of Assistant Chief Josh Bischof, Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez, and Exclusive Use Helicopter Pilot Tony Sousa.”

San Bernardino County Fire Department

“We extend our deepest condolences to the family, friends, and coworkers of @CALFIRERRU firefighters and the CWN pilot who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty yesterday. Our hearts go out to all who knew and loved them.”

San Bernardino Police Department

“The San Bernardino Police Department would like to send our condolences to CAL FIRE after hearing about the tragic accident in Riverside County. We are thankful for the firefighters who continue to risk their lives to protect our community.”

LA County Fire Department

“The #LACoFD sends our heartfelt condolences to our @CAL_FIRE fire family along with the Bischof, Rodriguez, and Sousa families. You are in our thoughts and prayers. RIP brave heroes.”

Ventura County Fire Department

The VCFD sends our condolences to our partners at @CALFIRE as they mourn the loss of Assistant Chief Josh Bischof, Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez, and Exclusive use Helicopter Pilot Tony Sousa. All were killed in the line of duty in a helicopter crash yesterday while fighting the Broadway Fire in Riverside County. Our thoughts and prayers go out to families and colleagues. Flags at our fire stations and headquarters will be flown at half-staff for 24 hours as a sign of solidarity and respect.”


“We are devastated at the loss of three brave souls involved in a midair collision. CAL FIRE Assistant Chief Josh Bischof & Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez perished along with an Exclusive Use helicopter pilot. Our love & support flows to families of these incredible individuals.”

City of Menifee

“Assistant Chief Bischof was a Menifee resident & served as our City’s Battalion Chief for 3.5 yrs. He was an extraordinary public servant who left a positive impact in our community & will be deeply missed. Please keep these men, their families, & CalFire in your hearts & prayers

Orange County Fire Authority

“Our hearts are with our CAL FIRE family and all the loved ones, friends, and colleagues impacted by this tragic loss.”

Riverside County Sheriff

“RSO sends our thoughts and prayers to our brothers and sisters.”

Murrieta Fire Department

“Sending our deepest condolences to @CALFIRERRU and the family and friends as they mourn the loss of 2 firefighters and 1 contract pilot after a helicopter crash in Cabazon yesterday. Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.”

Upland Police Department

“TeamUPD mourns with @CALFIRERRU after learning about the tragic accident in Riverside County. Our collective thoughts & prayers go out to all the members of CalFire, but specially the family, colleagues, & friends of those affected in this tragedy. Thank you for all you do.”

Fontana Police Department

Our hearts are with @calfire and the civilian pilot’s family, who tragically perished while bravely battling the #broadwayfire in Cabazon. As Byron Pulsifer said, “The circumstances of each call are unknown, but the commitment of firefighters is unwavering.”

Palm Spring Fire Department

“Our heartfelt condolences for the line-of-duty deaths of two Cal Fire firefighters and a contract pilot. This tragedy has left us deeply shaken and mourning the loss of our brave colleagues.”

San Diego County Sheriff’s Department

To our brothers and sisters at


@CALFIRERRU, please accept our deepest sympathies. The loss of Cal Fire Assistant Chief Josh Bischof, Cal Fire Captain Tim Rodriguez, and contract Pilot Tony Sousa while fighting a wildfire in Riverside County is a solemn reminder of the dangerous job of first responders in keeping our communities safe. We will never forget their bravery and ultimate sacrifice.”

California Officer of Emergency Services

On this challenging day, Cal OES stands with our colleagues

@CAL_FIRE in mourning the loss of these heroes who, selflessly put themselves in harm’s way to protect the lives and property of their fellow Californians.”

California State Parks

“CA State Parks joins the rest of the state in mourning the loss of @CAL_FIRE Assistant Chief Bischof, Fire Captain Rodriguez, and Pilot Sousa. The three were killed in a midair collision while engaged in firefighting operations on the Broadway Fire in Riverside County on Sunday.”

Previous postElon Musk's X aims to win back advertisers, signs deal with IAS Next postPayPal crypto chief Jose Fernandez da Ponte on battling Tether, USDC

Los Angeles Financial times

Copyright © 2024 Los Angeles Financial times

Updates via RSS
or Email