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Words fail me.

I am left almost speechless by the breathtaking inhumanity that can be dealt to the widow and children of an American hero, by the city he helped to save.

We all remember the tragic loss of the nineteen Hotshot firefighters in Arizona. Their sacrifice, and the sacrifice of so many like them is typical of the first responders in this country.

Men and women who put themselves in harms way that we might sleep in our beds, live our lives in the sure and certain knowledge that should disaster strike, they will be there.

Prescott, AZ, might find it a little harder in future to find good men to fight their fires:

Town denies Arizona hotshot widow left with four children promised lifetime benefits

Only one member of the 20-person Hotshot crew survived the blaze, and the families of the 19 victims were promised a half-million dollars or more in government benefits and private donations. The city promised all families a one-time payment of $328,618 and lifetime survivor benefits.

But now the city of Prescott is retracting its promise, claiming that 13 of the deceased firefighters were seasonal employees, thus making their families ineligible for survivor benefits – including health insurance, a life insurance payment, and monthly lifetime survivor benefits that could amount to several million dollars in the long run.

Would the "season", in this case be the fire season? You know, that time of year when there are likely to be fires, and when we need young men and women to risk their lives to save ours? Is that the "season" these bastards are referring to?

Apparently not:

“As shocked as I was that my husband went to work and never came home, I’m equally shocked in how the city has treated our family since then,” she told CBS News. “…I said to [city officials], ‘My husband was a full-time employee, he went to work full-time for you.’ And their response to me was, ‘Perhaps there was a communication issue in your marriage.’”
I could go on at length about the level of disgust I feel that city officials could even think something like this, let alone verbalise it.

I won't, what's the point? I'll let the story stand on its merits, and you can draw your own conclusions about the elected officials in this city.

The American Dream just died a little more.


The City of Prescott, AZ has a website.

They are still thanking supporters and contributors in their time of need. Given the above story, these words made me want to vomit:

City of Prescott - Appreciation for Support

As the City of Prescott continues to grieve the recent loss of 19 of our finest men, the Granite Mountain Hotshots, the wounds from the tragic events of June 30 are still fresh.

From the first moment the news broke, the City was overwhelmed with heartfelt calls and letters filled with sympathy and support for the families of the men and our community. We realize that there is no way to personally recognize and thank everyone for the tremendous outpouring of support which has been received. ...

The contact list on that site might be a decent place to make your feelings known.
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