North Idaho firefighter mourns fellow Hotshots killed in Arizona

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by WHITNEY WARD & KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on July 1, 2013 at 5:12 PM

COEUR D'ALENE, Idaho -- A former North Idaho Hotshot is mourning the lose of 19 fellow Hotshots who lost their lives battling wildfires in Arizona.

Hotshots are an elite team of firefighters who battle the worst conditions head on. There are only about 60 teams across the country who do this.

Shawn Pearson knew several of the Prescott, Arizona firefighters who were killed Sunday. Pearson now manages the fire district in Silver Valley.

He just got back from 17 days of battling the exact same conditions across the southwest. He said it's a special brotherhood that brings them there.

"It takes a special person to spend two weeks living in the diet, eating bad food, working hard to keep other people safe," said Pearson.

All of the Hotshot crews in North Idaho are deployed to New Mexico. Two teams from Washington are either en route to the southwest or they are on standby.

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