#Hot Corner

Diamondbacks respond to firefighter deaths

Mike Stobe

On the off-chance you've not been paying attention, some awful news Sunday night from Arizona:

PRESCOTT, Ariz. — As a deadly, wind-driven wildfire continued to rage out of control in central Arizona on Monday, crews recovered the last of the 19 bodies of the members of an elite firefighting crew, who died after being overtaken by flames while battling the blaze, officials said.

--snip--

According to government figures, the fire Sunday represents the largest number of firefighters killed in one wildfire since a 1933 blaze in California that killed 25, and the largest loss of firefighters since 341 and two paramedics died in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on New York City.

The Arizona Diamondbacks' response was swift and sure:

The D-backs will wear a patch on their uniforms for the rest of the 2013 season to honor the fallen firefighters. They will begin wearing the patch Friday, and until then they will wear black armbands on their right sleeves.

--snip--

When the D-backs return home Friday, they will wear their black jerseys, but whereas they used to say "D-backs" across the front, they will now say "Arizona" and there will be a white patch over the heart bearing the No. 19.

--snip--

The D-backs will encourage fans throughout the weekend and during this week's broadcasts to donate on dbacks.com in support of the 100 Club of Arizona, Arizona Red Cross and other charities that will assist the families and communities impacted by the tragedy.

Beginning Tuesday, fans will be able to donate at dbacks.com with each donation being matched by the Arizona Diamondbacks Foundation up to $100,000. Fans who donate $19 or more will be entered for a chance to win a team-signed home white jersey with the name "Yarnell" and the No. 19.

In addition to a moment of silence before Friday's game at Chase Field proceeds from the weekend's 50/50 Raffle will benefit the families of the tragedy, as will the proceeds from the weekend's online auction at dbacks.com, which will feature the jerseys worn by the players this weekend and signed nameplates from the D-backs clubhouse.

The Diamondbacks are Arizona's only big-time sports team, its only real institution, that's currently in the public eye with any real frequency. This is exactly what they should be doing, and kudos to them for doing it.

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