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Ceremony In Contra Costa County Honors Fallen Firefighters

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Firefighter Memorial

The Contra Costa County Fire Protection District honored 16 of the district’s firefighters who have lost their lives at a ceremony in Concord. (CBS)

CONCORD (CBS SF) — The Contra Costa County Fire Protection District honored 16 of the district’s firefighters who have lost their lives on the job over the past four decades in a remembrance ceremony in Concord Saturday.

The ceremony marked the fifth anniversary of the deaths of Capt. Matt Burton, 34, and Fire Engineer Scott Desmond, 37, in a house fire on Michele Drive in unincorporated San Pablo, said Fire Marshal Lewis Broschard.

Burton and Desmond were searching the home for two elderly residents when they were killed in what’s known as a “flashover,” in which the heat in the house became so intense that the room the pair was in suddenly burst into flames, according to fire officials.

The home’s residents, a 62-year-old woman and 67-year-old man, also perished in the fire.

Saturday’s ceremony honored the bravery of those two firefighters as well as the 14 others whose names are engraved on the memorial wall at a fire district training center in Concord.

“Those individuals identified on our memorial wall were committed to serving our citizens unselfishly and ultimately they gave their lives to the pursuit of public safety for their community,” Broschard said in a statement.

Several people were set to speak at the ceremony, which also featured the Contra Costa County Professional Firefighters Local 1230 Honor Guard.

The ceremony was held at the fire district’s Fallen Firefighters Memorial Wall located at the training facility at 2945 Treat Blvd. in Concord.

(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco and Bay City News Service. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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