Griffith Park firefighters honored

LOS ANGELES The mayor and Tom LaBonge unveiled a bronze plaque outside the Greek Theater honoring and thanking the fire department for its work to save the theater, Griffith Observatory and hundreds of homes that were in harms way.

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The devastating fire broke out at 1:20 p.m., a year ago. It started off as a small brush fire and quickly turned into a raging inferno. It took crews three days to put out the blaze.

Nearly 1,200 acres were charred, including several landmark locations within the park. Fortunately, no homes were destroyed and no one was killed.

The mayor told the crowd that a catastrophe was avoided thanks in part to luck given to the winds and the extreme preparation on the part of the L.A. City Fire Department.

"The only reason that we're standing here today in celebration of this very important anniversary is because of the heroics, the bravery and the precision and the professionalism of the men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department," Mayor Villaraigosa said.

"It just feels like we are doing our job. It seems kind of different to be honored for something that we do everyday. All of the pilots and the guys that we work with we do this every single day and it was another fire. It is nice to be recognized," said fire department helicopter pilot Scott Bowman

The fire department's air unit was the key to battling the blaze. There was a aerial tribute Thursday morning . Three of the departments helicopters soared through over head.

The rebuilding efforts continue in Griffith Park. LaBonge emphasized that all the trails had been reopened.


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Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and City Councilman Tom LaBonge will be on hand for the ceremony.

It took firefighters three days to put out the flames after the fire started east of the Hollywood sign and quickly made its way through the park. The fire eventually burned 820 acres.


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