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Incident Name: 
Date: 07/18/05
Personnel:  Gerald Michael "Jerry" Martinez
Age: 53
Agency/Organization: US Forest Service, Custer National Forest, He was stationed in Camp Crook, SD.
Position: Firefighter -SEAT Manager

Summary: Wildland firefighter Jerry Martinez was on assignment to a fire in Cortez, Colorado as a Single Engine Air Tanker (SEAT) Manager. At home in Camp Cook, SD, he was the Fire Management Officer for Custer National Forest on the Sioux Ranger District. Jerry had been assigned to his SEAT Manager duties since July 7, 2005. He performed his duties from 0830 hrs through 2100 hrs on July 17, 2005 and was discovered  on the morning of July 18, 2005; he had died overnight from a heart attack.

Second photo of Jerry credited to his wife

Gerry Martinez Gerry Martinez
Jerry Martinez Jerry Martinez

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  • USFS Heroes: Gerald Martinez
  • Smokejumper Obituary: Gerald Martinez (Redding, 1977)
    Jerry passed away in his sleep on July 18, 2005, in Cortez, Colorado, where he was on assignment with the Forest Service as an Air Tanker manager. He grew up in Salinas, California, and had a career with the USFS that included jobs in California, Oregon and Washington. Jerry took a position with the Custer N.F. in 1992 and had lived in Camp Crook, South Dakota until his death.

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Contributors to this article: Lynn Martinez, John Miller

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