The firefighter killed in the El Dorado fire last week has been identified as Charles Morton, a Big Bear Interagency Hotshot Squad Boss, the US Forest Service announced in a statement on Monday.
Chief Vicki Christiansen shared her sympathies to the family in a post on the San Bernardino Forest twitter account.
"Thursday evening we lost one of our own. Charlie Morton, Squad Boss for the Big Bear Interagency Hotshot Crew of the San Bernardino National Forest, was tragically killed during efforts to suppress the El Dorado Fire on their home unit. Our hearts go out to Charlie’s loved ones, friends, coworkers and the Big Bear Hotshots."
Morton, 39, was a San Diego native and began his career with the California Conservation Corps at the Butte Fire. He later went on to work with the Firestorm Fire Supression unit in Chico. In 2006, he began working with the Forest Service with the Truckee Interagency Hotshots on the Tahoe National Forest, officials said.
According to a statement from the family, Morton is survived by his wife and daughter, his parents, two brothers, cousins, and friends.
"He’s loved and will be missed. May he rest easy in heaven with his baby boy," the family wrote.
The El Dorado Fire has burned more than 22,000 acres as of Tuesday morning. Officials say the blaze was sparked by a couple using a "smoke-generating pyrotechnic device" as part of a gender reveal of their child.
Photo: San Bernardino National Forest