Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Sad.

Untitled
from the candlelight vigil tonight, taken by my friend Lauren

What do you even say in the worst of times? I'm sure many of you have read about the tragedy that took place in our tiny town this weekend. We lost 19 of our Hot Shot firefighters in a wildfire that overtook another small town nearby. And when you live in such a small place, everyone is connected and affected by a loss like this. We all lost neighbors and friends, husbands, sons and brothers.

It's hard to even know how to put something like this into words. I think about our sweet Andrew, a husband, a father of four, and it's difficult to make sense of a situation like this. He was one of Hank's best friends, our roommate before we got married, and one of my most favorite people in the entire world. Hank grew up with him, and later he was Hank's band's roadie, touring all across the country in that old van, all of the guys together. They were brothers. And to try and wrap my head around the fact that he is just gone, that I'll never hear him yelling "DIIIINOOO!" from across the room, that contagious smile lighting up every corner of every place he's in, is impossible and painful and so very numbing.

I hesitated to share anything about this here, because everything I type just sounds wrong. I've tried and I've tried but no matter how many times I type and delete, type and delete, I just can't seem to get the words right- find the right thing to say to express how I'm feeling, because in reality the loss of Andrew to us is nothing compared to the loss that his wife and family is feeling right now. My heart is so heavy thinking of their grief.

All 19 men gave their life protecting others', and they will forever be remembered as heroes. Our town was lucky to have these men as our own, and they will never be forgotten.

Hug your loved ones a little tighter tonight, and please send all of your thoughts of strength and peace to the families of these brave men.


52 comments:

  1. Thank you for reminding us that life is precious. I will certainly hug my loved ones a little tighter tonight.

    God Bless...

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  2. Oh, Danielle. I'm so sorry! I wish I could say something that has meaning or could comfort you, but I know I cannot.

    My husband is a firefighter in our small community and I can't imagine how difficult that would be to lose so many brave men. Again, I'm sorry for your community's loss.

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  3. I live in Mesa. This has been so awful. Praying for comfort for you and all the families involved.

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  4. So incredibly sad for you all there. Sending love and thoughts from Western Australia.

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  5. I am so, so very sorry for these losses. I had not heard about this and will be praying so much for these dear families and friends.

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  6. This was all over the news, even over here in The Netherlands. What a terrible loss, all my sympathies go out to you, their families and other friends x

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  7. I was on cnn.com tonight and they showed all the firefighters photos, with a little story about each of them. Andrews was actually the first one to show up and reading that he was a father of four just broke my heart, then to see this and know that he was such a dear friend to you. So sorry for your loss and so relieved that they protected your town like they did and were doing something they all really loved. xo

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  8. This is horrible news. So sorry to hear of your loss. This makes me so sad .... Love and prayers for you all!

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  9. my husband went to school at embry riddle in prescott and i know he was shocked when he heard what happen. so sorry that this loss touched your circle of friends. know that lots of prayers and love are coming your way from all across america.

    xo

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  10. Such horrible news to hear about. I am sorry to hear about these losses. It's such a shame, sending hugs from the UK x

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  11. I lost my best friend nine months ago. I miss her so much every day. Even writing about it makes my eyes teary.
    I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm sending love and thoughts from Germany.

    Marie

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  12. I read about the tragedy and I can't express my sadness. I knew that such young men had to have families, kids, yound wives, siblings, parents, loads of friends... I mean, they died because they wanted to help others. What brave and noble men. May they rest in peace.

    I'll send you lots of strenght for the hard times to come and lots of love, too.
    Nadine

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  13. I'm speechless. Send you lots of strength.

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  14. I was in the mall when I read about this, I couldn't stop myself from crying. So many amazing men snuffed out by this accident. I'm so sorry for your loss and for the loss of the families of these guys. They were heroes x

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  15. I am so sorry to hear about your losses :( My heart goes out to all of you... wishing you strength in this difficult time.

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  17. You and the whole community are in my prayers, such a horrible thing to happen to such brave humans.

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  18. That's really, really sad. I just lost one of my best girlfriends in a bike vs. car accident. She was ONLY 23. I don't even know what to feel, it's just wrong... And I live abroad, so couldn't actually be there with our friends and so on. Life can hit us so hard, right? Sending good thoughts to your area, sweet Dani! :} x

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  19. My thoughts go out to everyone in your town and these brave firefighters' families and loved ones. Men like this truly prove that heroes exist in the world.

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  20. Very sorry for your loss and Hank's. I will be keeping your family and your friends family in my thoughts. xo

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  21. I'm so very sorry for your loss. I've been reading about these firefighters in the news. Such a terrible event. Their families are in my thoughts.

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  22. My thoughts go out to each and every person that has been impacted by this...even in the UK this made every news bulletin & newspaper...it's truly horrific to imagine what your community is going through...hopefully the knowledge that there are so many people around the world supporting you will ease it just a little xx

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  23. Danielle, I am so sorry for your loss! I've been following along for updates on the situation, and it just seemed to get worse and worse. I hate that it impacted you and your loved ones so closely. I hope you find peace and comfort in the coming days!

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  24. It reached the news here in Denmark as well. I am so sorry, and sending lots of thoughts to you, the families and the town.

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  25. Dani,
    I saw this on the news. As soon as I saw Prescott, AZ I thought of you. This was an absolute terrible tragedy and I'm thinking of you, your family, and your community

    Cinnamon-g1rl, all the way up in Canada <3

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  26. I'm so sorry. As the wife of a police officer, I understand the sacrifices these mens families have made and now to lose them too. My heart breaks for all of you.

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  27. Oh Dani,
    I've been watching this unfold and it just breaks my heart. You were the first person I thought of when I heard Prescott.

    I'm so sorry for your loss and know how deeply this hurt is for you and your community family.

    xoxo
    Bernadette

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  28. I'm so heartsick for you and your community and the families of those who were lost. I am sending prayers of comfort and peace during this painful time.

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  29. I'm so sorry and my thoughts are going out to your whole community. Such a loss.

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  30. So, so sorry, Danielle. I've seen some interviews with Andrew's wife and they just broke my heart. What a tragic loss for the Prescott and the wildfire community.

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  31. So sorry for family's loss... let us know if there is any way we can donate to the families. Stay strong and together in this time.

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    Replies
    1. There is a way to donate straight to the Ashcraft family and the fund was set up by Andrew's brother and his wife.

      http://www.gofundme.com/3grdgs

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  32. Wow, I'm so sorry! I thought of you, when I heard about that terrible event, because I know you live in AZ.
    I'm so sorry that the tragedy had to touch you and your friend, and all the others that have lost families and friends as well.
    They were all heroes though, and it's those people out there doing those jobs, that we should be celebrating.
    I hope that you and your friends and family get through this as best as you can.

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  33. I was so sorry to hear about this great loss of people who were so brave and selfless. I'm glad that you shared your feelings here, even though it must have been so hard to think, process, and write about such a deep pain. I'm sorry that it has touched your family so personally, and you're all in my thoughts. Take care.

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  34. Just this morning I read an article in the LA Times about Andrew and his family. So sorry it hit so close to you.

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  35. A story making waves over here in the UK too. A terrible tragedy. x

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  36. Warm thoughts to you and all of your neighbors.

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  37. I'm so very sorry for your loss. I am a firefighter's wife and my husband was a Hotshot in Northern AZ. He left the wildland for municipal just last season. This is such a horrific tragedy, it's had me in tears all week. Sending all of my thoughts and prayers to the families and friends of these brave men. Again, I know there are no words, but I am so, so sorry for your loss.

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  38. Losing someone who's like your brother is... just hard. I struggled too with how to put it in words:
    http://peacocksndahlias.blogspot.com/2013/01/2013.html

    I think you did a wonderful job and now you have this post to come back to and read every so often, like I do. Love and prayers for your whole town...
    ~Katy

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  39. There is a way to donate straight to the Ashcraft family and the fund was set up by Andrew's brother and his wife.

    http://www.gofundme.com/3grdgs

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  40. My heart goes out to you and all of Prescott. Such a tragedy that touches so many
    x

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  41. Friend, my heart just aches for your loss and all the others. Hugs and love!

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  42. I am so sorry for your loss, lovely, and for everyone's. Such a horrible thing, and such amazing people. They were loved, you can tell that, easily. Your friend was extremely loved and I truly think your words are beautiful. <3

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  44. I'm so incredibly sorry for your losses. Nothing I type sounds right either, but please know I'm holding you and your family in my heart. I'm also holding all of the loved ones left behind in my heart. Such a tragedy. :(

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  45. I am so sorry for the loss of your dear friend Andrew and his fellow firefighters. Your sweet tribute to him was beautiful and helped us all to connect in prayer with these families. Thank you and I hope and pray for God's healing..

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  47. I am so sorry for your loss. You see these things on the news and feel horrible for everyone involved but to be as connected as you are must just be so hard. Thinking of you and sending lots of love. xo

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  48. This was a very unfortunate tragedy.
    I work for a fire department (billing)
    and I heard all about that fire. It was something
    world rocking. I am very sorry for your loss.
    This family is in our prayers!

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