VERNON, Calif. (KABC) -- A solemn flag ceremony was held Thursday in Vernon for a Los Angeles County firefighter who died battling a house blaze in Rancho Palos Verdes, honoring a man who dedicated two decades to the fire service.
AIR7 HD was over Fire Station 13 in Vernon, where Jonathan Flagler started his career in 2002. The 47-year-old was mostly recently assigned to county Fire Station 83. A flag that flew over that station was raised at Station 13 during Thursday's ceremony, then later lowered, formally folded and will be presented to Flagler's family.
"We'll always remember the day we lost our brother," county Fire Department Chaplain Vince Roldan said during the ceremony. "Jon was a true hero. And he lost his life in the line of duty upholding his oath to protect the lives and property of the community he served. There is a scripture in the gospel of John that says 'Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.' That's the heart of a firefighter and it is also why we are all hurting so much right now.
"Jon Flagler had that heart. He lived a selfless life, always putting the people in his life that he loved first. Jon never did anything halfway. He gave his all in everything -- as a husband, father, friend and as a firefighter. And that is why he will be missed but will never be forgotten."
A memorial for Flagler, who lived in San Clemente with his wife and two teen sons, will be held Friday at Cottonwood Church in Los Alamitos.
City News Service contributed to this report.