PRESCOTT, Ariz. -- More than 1,000 people turned out Monday to a Prescott gymnasium to honor the bravery and sacrifice of 19 Hotshot firefighters who died battling a wildfire in Arizona.
Those in the crowd rocked children in their arms, wiped away tears and applauded robustly after each set of remarks, often rising to their feet. Speakers at the memorial quoted heavily from Scripture.
U.S. Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., said the Hotshots laid down their lives not only for their friends and loved ones, but for people they didn't even know.
The men died Sunday after the blaze they were battling near the small town of Yarnell, about 85 miles northwest of Phoenix, exploded tenfold in a matter of hours, trapping them.
Authorities say the tragedy all but wiped out the 20-member Granite Mountain Hotshots, a Prescott-based unit.
Prescott Fire Chief Dan Fraijo spoke in a shaky voice and paused frequently as he described throwing a picnic a month ago for his new recruits and meeting their families.
"About five hours ago, I met those same families at an auditorium," he said during the service, held at the campus of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. "Those families lost. The Prescott Fire Department lost. The city of Prescott lost. The state of Arizona and the nation lost."
At the end of the ceremony, dozens of wildfire fighters sporting Hotshot shirts and uniforms from other jurisdictions marched down from the top of the bleachers to the front of the gym auditorium, their heavy work boots drumming a march on the wooden steps.
The firefighters bowed their heads for a moment of silence in memory of their fallen comrades as slides bearing each man's name and age were projected behind them.
The 19 killed were Andrew Ashcraft, 29; Kevin Woyjeck, 21; Anthony Rose, 23; Eric Marsh, 43; Christopher MacKenzie, 30; Robert Caldwell, 23; Clayton Whitted , 28; Scott Norris, 28; Dustin Deford, 24; Sean Misner, 26; Garret Zuppiger, 27; Travis Carter, 31; Grant McKee, 21; Travis Turbyfill, 27; Jesse Steed, 36; Wade Parker, 22; Joe Thurston, 32; William Warneke, 25; and John Percin, 24.
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Andrew Ashcraft, 29
Andrew Ashcroft's wife said he always thought of others before himself, <a href="http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-505263_162-57591915/slain-hotshots-wife-remember-them-as-heroes/" target="_blank">reported CBS News</a>. Juliann Ashcroft told "CBS This Morning," "You know there are moments when I think of him and I smile because I love him so much and then I feel guilty for smiling, because I'm still in this shock."
Kevin Woyjeck, 21
This undated photo courtesy of the the Woyjeck family shows firefighter, Kevin Woyjeck, right, and his father, Los Angeles County Fire Capt. Joe Woyjeck. Kevin Woyjeck of Seal Beach, Calif., was one of the 19 Granite Mountain Hotshot Crew, who was killed Sunday evening above the town of Yarnell, northwest of Phoenix in the nation's biggest loss of firefighters in a wildfire in 80 years. (AP Photo/Woyjeck Family)
Anthony Rose, 23
Anthony Rose was remembered "as a jokester, but also as a kind and caring man who 'blossomed' at the Crown King Fire Department," according to NBC Chicago. <a href="http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/07/01/19238581-arizona-firefighters-young-dedicated-beloved" target="_blank">His fiancee, Tiffany Hettrick</a>, is expecting a child in October.
Eric Marsh, 43
This 2012 photo provided by Scott Marsh shows Eric Marsh, left, superintendent of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, during a visit with his cousin Scott Marsh in North Carolina. Eric was one of the 19 Granite Mountain Hotshot Crew, who was killed Sunday evening above the town of Yarnell, northwest of Phoenix, Ariz., in the nation's biggest loss of firefighters in a wildfire in 80 years.
Christopher MacKenzie, 30
Christopher MacKenzie, whose father was also a firefighter, grew up in California and was an avid snowboarder, <a href="http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/07/01/19238581-arizona-firefighters-young-dedicated-beloved" target="_blank">according to NBC News</a>. "I was very proud of him," his mom said. "He's gonna be so missed."
Robert Caldwell, 23
Robert Caldwell was born in the Philadelphia, Pa. area and moved out west with his family about 18 years ago, <a href="http://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/news/local/Elite-Firefighter-Killed-Fighting-Arizona-Wildfire-Born-in-BuxCo-Loved-Eagles-214033201.html" target="_blank">according to NBC10</a>. "We are extremely proud of him and we just want the rest of the world to know that," his father told the station. Caldwell was a "diehard" Philadelphia Eagles and Phillies fan.
Clayton Whitted, 28
Clayton Whitted's former high school coach, Lou Beneitone, said he was a "wonderful kid," <a href="http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2013/07/01/arizona-firefighters-mourned/2481207/" target="_blank">reported the Associated Press</a>. "He was a smart young man with a great personality, just a wonderful personality."
Scott Norris, 28
Scott Norris was "an exceptional man, wise beyond his years," a <a href="http://www.kpho.com/story/22736950/yarnell-hill-fire" target="_blank">coworker told KPHO</a>. "I never heard a dirty word out of the guy. He was the kind of guy who if he dated your daughter, you'd be OK with it," a <a href="https://www.azpm.org/p/top-news/2013/7/1/25190-19-brave-men-their-stories/" target="_blank">Prescott, Ariz. resident told AP</a>.
Dustin Deford, 24
In this June 2013 photo provided by the Prescott Fire Department via the Prescott Daily Courier, Dustin Deford, a member of the Prescott Fire Department Granite Mountain Hotshots, sharpens his chainsaw while working a fire near Prescott, Ariz. DeFord, 24, who grew up in Ekalaka, Mont., died Sunday, June 30, 2013 with 18 other firefighters when they were overtaken by an out-of-control blaze.
Sean Misner, 26
Sean Misner followed in the footsteps of his grandfather, who was a fire chief in California, <a href="http://whnt.com/2013/07/02/huntsville-man-remembers-friend-fallen-arizona-firefighter-sean-misner/" target="_blank">according to WHNT</a>. According to AP, Misner was a varsity football player and <a href="https://www.azpm.org/p/top-news/2013/7/1/25190-19-brave-men-their-stories/" target="_blank">participated in his high school's sports medicine program</a>. He is survived by his wife, who is seven months pregnant. Source: <a href="https://www.facebook.com/SeanMisnerMemorial" target="_blank">Sean Misner Memorial Facebook Page</a>
Garret Zuppiger, 27
Garret Zuppiger was a <a href="http://uanews.org/story/1985-2013-zuppiger-hotshot-firefighter-and-ua-alumnus" target="_blank">2008 graduate of the University of Arizona</a> and grew up in the Phoenix area, according to UA News. He was "extremely proud" of being a firefighter, a friend said according to the site. His friends said he had a passion for outdoor activities. Source: <a href="http://www.dcourier.com/" target="_blank">The Daily Courier</a>
Travis Carter, 31
Travis Carter was known as one of the strongest members of his hotshot crew, but also the most humble, <a href="https://www.azpm.org/p/top-news/2013/7/1/25190-19-brave-men-their-stories/" target="_blank">according to AP</a>. "No one could beat him," a trainer at a gym near his firehouse said. "But the thing about him, was he would never brag about it."
Grant McKee, 21
The <a href="http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_FIREFIGHTERS_KILLED_VIGNETTES?SITE=WVEC&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT" target="_blank">cousin of fellow hotshot Robert Caldwell, Grant</a> was "one of the most likable people you could ever meet," a relative told the Associated Press. "Everybody loved Grant." According to OC weekly, the 21-year old California native was <a href="http://blogs.ocweekly.com/navelgazing/2013/07/grant_mckee_granite_mountain_h.php" target="_blank">a member of the Prescott Disc Golf Club</a> and training to be an emergency medical technician. <a href="http://www.scpr.org/news/2013/07/02/38007/hotshots-killed-in-ariz-fire-remembered-mourned/" target="_blank">McKee grew up in Orange County, Calif.</a> and attended school in Newport Beach.
Travis Turbyfill, 27
Described by his family as funny and selfless in an obituary on AZCentral.com, <a href="http://www.azcentral.com/news/articles/20130702yarnell-fire-travis-turbyfill-obit.html" target="_blank">Travis was a Marine who served in the U.S. Forest Service </a>since 2005. He is survived by his wife, Stephanie, and their two daughters, Brynley and Brooklyn.
Jesse Steed, 36
According to a statement released by his brother Cassidy Steed, <a href="http://renton.patch.com/groups/giving/p/renton-police-officer-loses-brother-in-arizona-fire-starts-online-fund-to-support-families" target="_blank">Jesse was the most senior member of the hotshot firefighters</a>. He had two children with his wife, Desiree, and served in the Marine Corps from 1996 to 2000.
Wade Parker, 22
As a son of a firefighter, <a href="http://azstarnet.com/wade-parker/image_691a027e-e33e-11e2-9e13-0019bb2963f4.html" target="_blank">Wade Parker was pretty excited to be a part of the Hotshots</a>, Fire Department Capt. Jeff Knotek told the Arizona Daily Star. According to <a href="http://www.azcentral.com/news/arizona/articles/20130702yarnell-fire-wade-parker-obit.html" target="_blank">an obituary</a>, Wade was an avid baseball player and engaged to a high school classmate named Alicia Owens. Their wedding was planned for October.
Joe Thurston, 32
According to the Salt Lake Tribune, <a href="http://m.sltrib.com/sltrib/mobile3/56540846-219/thurston-goodrich-fire-joe.html.csp" target="_blank">Joe Thurston was a Utah native with a musical ear and natural athletic abilities</a>. He was married to his high school sweetheart, Marsena, for over a decade. In a statement released by his family, Joe was called "funny, hard working and extremely kind" and "could always be found at the baseball field or on the floor playing with his kids."
William Warneke, 25
Known to friends and family as "Bill," Warneke served for four years in the U.S. Marine Corps before joining the Prescott Fire Department in April. The late firefighter's grandmother, Nancy, told the Arizona Daily Star that <a href="http://azstarnet.com/william-warneke/image_eb99a8e4-e2c1-11e2-8646-0019bb2963f4.html" target="_blank">Roxanne, Bill's widow, is expecting a child</a> in December.
John Percin, 24
This undated photo provided by the family shows John Joseph Percin Jr. Percin, 24, was among the 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots firefighters who were killed Sunday, June 30, 2013 when a windblown wildfire overcame them north of Phoenix. (AP Photo)