Pres. Obama mourns deaths of AZ firefighters - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Pres. Obama mourns deaths of AZ firefighters

Posted: Updated:
Yarnell Hill Fire in central Arizona Yarnell Hill Fire in central Arizona
  • More newsMore>>

  • ASU board chairman resigns, vice chairman refuses

    ASU board chairman resigns, vice chairman refuses

    Thursday, July 24 2014 11:15 PM EDT2014-07-25 03:15:01 GMT
    At the request of Alabama Governor Robert Bentley, ASU Board of Trustees Chairman Elton Dean announced Thursday in an emotional radio interview that he is resigning. Trustee Marvin Wiggins says he's not leaving.More >>
    At the request of Alabama Governor Robert Bentley, ASU Board of Trustees Chairman Elton Dean announced Thursday in an emotional radio interview that he is resigning. Trustee Marvin Wiggins says he's not leaving.
    More >>
  • Columbus man credits his life to HIV/AIDS researchers killed aboard flight MH17

    Columbus man credits his life to HIV/AIDS researchers killed aboard flight MH17

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:48 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:48:10 GMT
    Prominent HIV/AIDS researchers were among the 298 victims identified aboard flight MH17. To honor their legacy, the Chattahoochee Valley Better Way Foundation is hosting a candlelight vigil. We spokeMore >>
    The Chattahoochee Valley Better Way Foundation to host candlelight vigil to honor top HIV/AIDS researchers killed in Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 on July 18th, 2014. More >>
  • Planes with Ukraine bodies arrive in Netherlands

    Planes with Ukraine bodies arrive in Netherlands

    Thursday, July 24 2014 10:23 PM EDT2014-07-25 02:23:33 GMT
    Ukraine's government says 51 containers holding bodies and body parts of victims of the Malaysia Airlines crash are ready to depart for the Netherlands aboard two military transport planes.More >>
    Two more military aircraft carrying remains of victims from the Malaysian plane disaster arrived in the Netherlands on Thursday, while Australian and Dutch diplomats joined to promote a plan for a U.N. team to secure the...More >>
PHOENIX (CBS5) -

President Barack Obama called the 19 firefighters who died Sunday while battling an Arizona wildfire "heroes" and "highly skilled professionals."

The Yarnell Hill Fire started with a lightning strike on Friday and spread to 2,000 acres on Sunday amid triple-digit temperatures.

Eighteen of the victims were from the Prescott Granite Mountain Hotshots, fire officials said. It's not known where the other victim was based.

Here is Obama's complete statement:

"Yesterday (Sunday), 19 firefighters were killed in the line of duty while fighting a wildfire outside Yarnell, Arizona. They were heroes - highly-skilled professionals who, like so many across our country do every day, selflessly put themselves in harm's way to protect the lives and property of fellow citizens they would never meet.

"In recent days, hundreds of firefighters have battled extremely dangerous blazes across Arizona and the Southwest. The federal government is already assisting, and we will remain in close contact with state and local officials to provide the support they need.

"But today, Michelle and I join all Americans in sending our thoughts and prayers to the families of these brave firefighters and all whose lives have been upended by this terrible tragedy."

Obama issued the statement while on a trip to South Africa.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow