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The USFA has received notice of the following firefighter fatality: AZ

It is in great sadness and with heavy hearts, that we as a Brotherhood post the 57th Line Of Duty Death for 2011 from the United States Fire Administration. Fellow Brother Firefighter Deon Classay has made the ultimate sacrifice in love for their fellow man. Our sincerest condolences go out to our brothers family and the members of the Bureau of Indiaqn Affairs, Fort Apache Agency.

Deon "Dino" Jason Classay

Rank: Firefighter
Age: 42
Gender: Male
Status: Wildland
Years of Service: 22
Date of Incident: 06/23/2011
Time of Incident: 1200hrs
Date of Death: 06/23/2011

Fire Department: Bureau of Indian Affairs, Fort Apache Agency
Address: P.O. Box 560, Whiteriver, AZ 85941
Telephone: (928) 338-5303
Fire Department Chief: Lynn Polacca, Deputy Superintendent

Incident Description: The lightning caused Diamond Fire was reported to Show Low Dispatch on 06/23/2011 at approximately 1200hrs local time. The location of the fire was confirmed by a helicopter to be north of the Black River on Fort Apache, approximately 2.5 miles northeast of Ten of Diamonds Ranch.
The Fort Apache Helitack and Fort Apache Hotshots were dispatched as Initial Attack resources and were flown to a helispot located on a ridge top on Paddy Butte near the fire start. Terrain in the area is steep and rocky with a dense woodlands fuel type. Following completion of a handline around the approximately 35 acre fire all resources hiked back up to the helispot (spike camp). As resources returned to helispot, the Incident Commander determined that one firefighter was not accounted for and initiated a search to locate the missing firefighter. The firefighter was in possession of a handheld radio and attempts to contact him throughout the evening were not successful. After several sweeps of the area, law enforcement from local, county and state agencies were requested to assist with the search efforts. Search efforts continued throughout the night until the missing firefighter was found deceased at 0618hrs.
Incident Location: Vicinity of Paddy Butte, AZ

Funeral Arrangements: 07/31/2011
Memorial Fund Contact and Address: None reported.

Tribute is being paid to Firefighter Deon "Dino" Jason Classay at
To date, 57 firefighter fatalities have been reported to USFA in 2011; 52 from incidents that occurred in 2011 and five from previous years’ incidents. Year-to-date monthly and annual USFA firefighter fatality reports are posted online @

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