Vice President, Governor Mourn SoCal Firefighters

"He is gone but he will never be forgotten"

Sunday, Sep 13, 2009  |  Updated 8:40 AM PDT
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After the Station Fire: Residents Return to Ruin

AP

Arnie Quinones, Ted Hall

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Vice President Joe Biden promised to support firefighters in their time of need, as he joined from around the world at Dodger Stadium on Saturday to pay respects to two firefighters killed in the largest fire in the history of Los Angeles County.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger joined Los Angeles County Fire Chief P. Michael Freeman in promising that authorities will find the arsonist responsible for starting the brush fire that killed Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Tedmund Hall and Los Angeles County Firefighter Specialist Arnaldo "Arnie" Quinones.

"Let us continue to demonstrate the courage and bravery Ted and Arnie showed us. Let us be vigilant in the hunt for those responsible for starting this fire," county supervisor Don Knabe said. "We will find you."

Hall, a 47-year-old San Bernardino resident, and Quinones, a 35-year-old Palmdale resident, were killed when their vehicle went off a road and over a cliff at Mount Gleason. The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department launched a homicide investigation after authorities determined that the Station Fire was the result of arson.

Biden promised "we will give the Teds and Arnies all the support they need, the equipment the need, the capacity they need, for we owe them."

"You knew, as we said goodbye to Ted and Arnie each day that it might be for the last time. You knew that they might not come home. You lived everyday with that uncertainty," Schwarnezzeger said. "You still supported them and the work that they loved so much -- and the work that kept us all safe."

Freeman said a homeless man went to the Los Angeles County Fire's Palmdale station and donating "his last two dollars" to the wives of Hall and Quinones.

A tearful brother, Ozzie Quinones Jr., said, "I am so honored to have time spent with a brother that was more than a hero to me. He was the largest superstar, the largest movie star, the largest man to me.

"I just want to say thank you for all, form the bottom of our hearts. He is gone but he will never be forgotten."

In its 15th day, the Station fire has burned more than 160,000 acres and is 84 percent contained at a cost of more than $88 million to fight.

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