Sponsored by


Ducey: Flags at half-staff to honor Tucson firefighter, pilot killed in wildfire crash

Flags will be flown at half-staff on Tuesday to honor Jeff Piechura, a former Northwest Fire District chief, and pilot Matthew Miller, who were killed Saturday while flying over a wildfire in Mohave County, Gov. Doug Ducey ordered.

Piechura, 62, and Miller, 48, were on an observation flight over the Cedar Basin Fire near the town of Wikieup, in Mohave County in northwestern Arizona, when their plane crashed around noon Saturday.

Piechura was a Tucson resident and a former chief of the Northwest Fire District who served the Marana, Casas Adobes and Tucson Mountains areas for 24 years until his retirement in 2012. Piechura was working for the Coronado National Forest in fighting the wildfire.

He is survived by his wife and five children.

Miller was a pilot with Falcon Executive Aviation, a company contracted by the U.S. Forest Service.

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of Jeff Piechura and Matthew Miller, who were carrying out their mission on the Cedar Basin Fire in service of the people of Arizona,” Ducey said in a news release Monday afternoon. “My deepest condolences go to the Piechura and Miller families, their loved ones and colleagues. The memory of these brave, selfless firefighters will live on. Our prayers are with them and all of Arizona’s wildland firefighters serving in the face of danger to keep their fellow Arizonans safe.”

“In honor of Jeff and Matthew’s service, I have ordered flags at all state buildings be lowered to half-staff” on Tuesday, June 13, Ducey said.

- 30 -
have your say   


There are no comments on this report. Sorry, comments are closed.

Sorry, we missed your input...

You must be logged in or register to comment

Read all of TucsonSentinel.com's
coronavirus reporting here »

Click image to enlarge

Jeff Piechura in an undated photo from his Facebook page.