Memorial set up in Yarnell where 19 firefighters died - New York News

Memorial set up in Yarnell where 19 firefighters died

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YARNELL, Ariz. -

Highway 89 leading into Yarnell was officially reopened to traffic Wednesday, and those who ventured up -- and there were many -- went to pay homage to the fallen 19. They did so at a special memorial built not far from where they died.

The temporary memorial was built by the incident management team that eventually took over command of this fire.

The men and women who are part of this team were so touched by what happened they wanted to give the community a place to honor the fallen.

"Coming up this way, went right past it, same road right here all the way to Prescott," says Jennie Ring.

Jennie Ring was on her way to Prescott from California Sunday, June 30 when she drove through Yarnell.

Tragedy was unfolding all around her as flames danced dangerously close to Highway 89. She came back today to remember.

"There's nothing you can say, it's just, I feel so sad for all the families. You look, every other house is gone."

The photos of the Granite Mountain Hotshots -- their smiles are here. Their story told to perfect strangers. A tale of how they died fighting the Yarnell Hill Fire.

Brad Pitassi was part of the team that made this possible.

"We want the ability for folks to come to Yarnell to read the biography, look out, have a moment to recognize the sacrifices made," says Pitassi.

The memorial sits about a mile from where the firefighters died. A scope there allows people who want to grieve and honor the heroes a closer look at where the tragedy took place.

"There's a sense of peace and a sense of its not going to go away but I think its cathartic to be where they were to get that sense of what happened," says Cheryl Ring.

The incident management team bused up anyone who wanted. People like ring, who wanted to see the lone flag that flies for the 19 fallen heroes.

"It's a tribute to the guys who are sacrificing their lives every day. It's not an easy job, there's nothing simple about what they do."

The flag memorial is lit up by solar lights, and it is permanent. The pole was donated by APS. It was put in place this past Sunday, and the incident management team raised the flag on Monday.

The Yarnell Fire is 100% contained.

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