I was called for jury duty this past week. I wasn’t selected, questioned or seated. That’s OK, because I would have had to disqualify myself. The charge was illegal camping. While I feel for Boulder’s homeless population, illegal camping often involves illegal campfires. Illegal campfires often lead to wildland fires. As we have seen over the last few years, wildland fires can lead to massive property destruction. More importantly, wildland fires in Boulder County put Boulder County’s wildland fire fighters in harm’s way. I am a member of the local wildland fire fighter community, and I cannot condone anything that increases the risk to my friends and associates. It was a miracle that no fire fighters died in the Four Mile Canyon fire. It is a supreme tribute to the wildland fire fighters that no residents died in that fire either.
On July 30,2002, Rocky Mountain Helitack pilot Gordon Knight brought “78 Yankee” down for the last time, with fatal results. I was working in my yard tonight, with my “78 Yankee” t-shirt on. My next door neighbor saw my t-shirt, and brought me a can of Oskar Blue’s new G”Night beer. On the can, it says, “If you knew the man behind this tribute, this ale needs no explanation. If you didn’t, we’re sorry.” My neighbor didn’t know Gordon, but she recognized the name. I knew him, I was honored to have known him, and he was a hero in the largest sense of the word. Let’s all remember Gordon Knight.
Today, I saw that Boulder remembers their heroes, even if they didn’t know them. Thank you, Boulder.