Passing of Joel Johnson

Joel was a Fire Captain in ORU, leaving for TCU in 1980 when the contract with Orange County ended. Joel passed away at home after a valiant battle with ALS.

There will be a Celebration of Life for Joel, who passed away due to complications with ALS on May 13, 2020. The Celebration of Life with Cal Fire Honors will be on Saturday June 27, 2020 at the following location:

Calvary Chapel – Sonora
19889 Soulsbyville Road
P.O. Box 432 [Mail]
Soulsbyville, CA, 95372

Services start at 1400 with a reception immediately following the service. The service will also be Streamed Live on the Internet at the following link:

Donations in Joel’s name may be made to your local ALS Association of your choice. Here is a link to different Chapters.

Passing of Richard “Dick” Miller

Dick Miller passed away May 25, 2020 in Castle Rock, CO. He was 93 years old.
Dick started with CDF in 1952 and retired in 1982 spending his entire career in the San Diego Unit.

Passing of Hans Bolowich

It is with profound sadness that I inform our CAL FIRE/Riverside County Fire Department Family and partnering agencies that Battalion Chief, Hans Bolowich passed away peacefully with his family by his side on Monday, May 25, 2020 after a heroic battle with cancer.

Hans was born on December 29, 1963 in. Some of his favorite hobbies included fly fishing, football, skiing and wakeboarding. Hans played football for San Bernardino Valley College and later coached for Yucaipa High School.

Hans’ career in the fire service began in 1982 where he was a volunteer firefighter at Riverside County Fire Department Station 22 in Cherry Valley for five years. In 1985, Hans went to paramedic school and later worked for AMR (formerly Goodhew) Ambulance.

In 2002, Hans was hired by CAL FIRE as a Firefighter Paramedic on Squad 84 in Temecula and further promoted through the ranks as Fire Apparatus Engineer Paramedic and later a Fire Captain Paramedic before his Schedule B assignment at Anza Station 29. Finally, Hans promoted to Battalion Chief in 2019 where he was assigned to Battalion 14.

Since 2005, Hans was an instructor at Moreno Valley College teaching pharmacology to paramedic students until his illness.

Hans held a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from Cal State San Bernardino. He is survived by his wife, Carla Bolowich, brothers Konrad and Franz Bolowich and sister Heidi Jackson.

We will deeply miss Hans and will be here to support Carla and his family during this very difficult time. Information regarding Hans’ celebration of life will be forthcoming.

The Bolowich family would love to have any photos you have of Hans during the course of his career. Photos can be uploaded to:

Memorial Service Flowers:

Oak Valley Florist

(951) 769-5973 or (800) 748-1099

The Riverside County Professional Firefighters Benevolent Fund has set up an in-kind donation account:

Funeral Services are being discussed and an update will be announced when appropriate

The passing of Sunnie Fronek Jr.

George L. Fronek Jr, known to his friends as Sunnie, age 72, of Lake Havasu City, Arizona, passed away peacefully Wednesday, March 25, 2020, in his home surrounded by family.

Sunnie was born November 9, 1947, in Chicago, Illinois. His family moved to California when he was 3 years old where he resided until he moved to Lake Havasu in 1996. On July 31, 1976, Sunnie married his wife, Kim Simpson, in Apple Valley, California.

Sunnie had a life long career with Cal Fire beginning as a seasonal firefighter and promoting to Deputy Unit Chief of San Bernardino Ranger Unit. Sunnie is a 22-year veteran of the California National Guard retiring as a Master Sgt in 1988. Sunnie held multiple positions in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints including serving as Bishop of the Acoma Ward. Sunnie also served the community as the school board President for Desert Technology High School.

Sunnie is preceded in death by his parents George and Helen Fronek and son, Kirtley Fronek. He is survived by his wife Kim Fronek, his daughters Senice Sommer (Tim Witt), Krista Fronek, Holly Larison (Shawn), his son Brice Fronek (Shannon), his grandsons Brandon Craig, Ryan Dodds (Madison), Brian Fronek, Tyler Ishman, Dillon Ishman, David (Fronek) Powell, Great Grandsons Grayson Craig and Sutton Dodds, and his siblings Roger Fronek (Susie), Sandy Williams, and Janet Fronek.

A walk-thru viewing will be held at Lietz-Fraze Funeral Home in Lake Havasu City, Arizona on Saturday, 28, 2020 from 11:00 am until 1:00 pm.

Passing of David Allen McKay

David A. McKay, 83, died, March 11, 2020. He joins his wife Vicki McKay and leaves his daughter, Lisa (Matt) Clawson; his stepson, Rick (Tilda) Richardson; three grandchildren, Saxon, Hutton & Taylor; his brother Howard & family, Sammy, Kim, Melanie & Dennis; and his stepsister, Andrea (Ron Dixon) & late stepbrother, Billy (Cathy) McKay.
Born and raised in San Diego CA, the son of Howard and Erma McKay. After serving with the US Army as an Artillery Surveyor in Germany from 1960 to 1962, David returned to CDF/CAL FIRE, where he had started his career in 1954, as a lifelong firefighter in the San Diego Unit. He was promoted to Battalion Chief in Sonoma County in 1977, where he remained & retired in 1989. He was also a member of the CDF 25 Year Club.
Dave loved movies and travel, golf, biking, boogie boarding (before there was such a thing), snowmobiling, crabbing, and gardening. He was a die-hard Chargers and Padres fan. David was a restless retiree, and worked at the Bennett Valley Golf Course, Blood Bank of the Redwoods and was a Retired Annuitant for CDF/CAL FIRE. He volunteered at Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital, Salvation Army and Council on Aging.
Donations made in lieu of flowers will be used to honor David’s favorite causes: American Heart Association, Disabled American Veterans, Kenwood Fireman’s Association and the Historical Society & Museum of the California Department of Forestry & Fire Protection.

Passing of Sam Davis

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the untimely passing of our beloved and well-respected State Retiree Director, Sam Davis. Sam was an advocate for our retirees and served members of CAL FIRE Local 2881 for many years. Please keep his family, friends and fire family in your prayers. Information on services will be forthcoming.

Passing of Steve Stein

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 Steve Stein passed away January 24, 2020. He retired after 35 years with CDF. He started in 1956 in San Diego, became a FFTD, Captain/Foreman and Assistant Ranger in Riverside. Left to Tuolumne/Calaveras in 1969 after Job Corp shut down at Oak Glenn. He spent most of his career in Madera-Mariposa as a SFRII.

The memorial service is Saturday, February 8, 2020 at 11:00 am. It will be held at the Catheys valley Baptist church, 4565 Cornetts entrance road, Catheys valley, Calif. There will be a pot luck lunch following the first service. 

Passing of James McClure

James McClure passed away January 25, 2020 per Richard McClure, son of James, FC from South Ops OCC Ret. Jame’s wife, Marie McClure would like to pass along the information of his passing to those who may have worked with him or remember him.

Funeral Details:

Church on the Hill

5500 Alessandro Blvd., CA 92506

February 8th, 2020

Service begins @ 11:00 am

Family requests casual dress unless you are on duty, work uniform is acceptable.

Passing of Maurice Bedoka Jr.

Maurice Marcus Bedoka Jr., 76 years, passed away on the December 30, 2019 in Santa Rosa, CA.

Maurice was born on the May 7, 1943 in Anadarko, OK to the late Pearl and Maurice Bedoka. He was the youngest of seven children. He was preceded in death by brothers Louis (Buddy) Bedoka, Franklyn (Buck) Bedoka and sisters Ann Donaghey and Marcie McGlothin. Maurice is survived by his sisters Joyce Smith and Guyneth Cardwell.

Maurice worked for the State of California for over 25 years; 15 with the Department of Forestry. On July 4, 1970, he married his late wife Lydia Bedoka. The two of them raised three children, Brian, Ethan, and Devon.
In 1998, Maurice became a grandfather with the birth of Amanda and then again in 2002 with the birth of Sarah.

He retired from work due to health problems but continued to spend time with his family. After the death of his wife on March 12, 2019 he was deeply saddened. He missed her so much, she was his best friend. Maurice was a loving husband, father, brother, and uncle. He will be dearly missed and loved forever by his family.

A Memorial Service will be held at 2:00 pm on Saturday February 8, 2020 at Daniels Chapel of the Roses at 1225 Sonoma Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA 95405.