“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Lakeside in Navajo County, Arizona — The American Mountains (Southwest)

Rodeo-Chediski Fire

June 18th 2002 – July 7 2002

Rodeo-Chediski Fire Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner, September 25, 2010
1. Rodeo-Chediski Fire Marker
Inscription.  The White Mountain communities dedicate this memorial to the courageous men and women who voluntarily put themselves in harm's way to protect from imminent destruction by the Rodeo-Chediski Fire.

By the Grace of God, and through the courageous, heroic efforts of firefighters and support personnel, our community survived the most devastating wildfire in Arizona history.

In particular, the burnout operation, led by Rick Lupe, was performed by a team of 4 hotshot crews that worked 36 continuous hours to create a 14 mile long barrier that stopped the massive fire's advance toward Show Low, Pinetop-Lakeside, and Hon-Dah.

460,182 Acres Burned - 50,000 People Evacuated
491 Structures Destroyed, including 465 Homes
2000 Homes saved from imminent destruction.

4 Type-1 Incident Management Teams
6600 Firefighters - 12 Air Tankers - 26 Helicopters
245 Fire Engines - 89 Bulldozers - 95 Water Trucks

Federal Funds $43,000,000

In addition, private citizens, municipalities, and commercial businesses
donated countless amounts of time, money, food and services.

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Thank You
The citizens of the White Mountains
Dedicated September 17th, 2005
This memorial was conceived, coordinated and erected as an Eagle Scout project by Richard C. Genck and made possible by the following contributors:
Randy White – Sculptor • White Mountain Apache Tribe • Hunsaker Bros, Inc. • Day & Sons • Venture Electric • Town of Pinetop-Lakeside • City of Show Low • Run to the Pines • Christopher's Gardens • It's Magic Landscape • Pico's Nursery • Pinetop Country Club • Rod and Cathy Genck • Dr. Jeff and Cindy Northup • Dr. William C. and Deborah Tindale • Pinetop Chamber of Commerce • Tim and Debbie Hoye • Robert and Cherry Horne • Cellular One • Charlie Clark's Steakhouse • Steven and Heidi Shumway • Reality Home Builders, Inc. • Landamerica Transnation • Mitchell Major M.D. • Bison Homes • Snow Creek • Show Low Youth Foundation • Torreon • Horne Auto

[ Located next to the marker is a Firefighter Memorial dedicated to Richard Glenn Lupe who in June, 2003 lost his life due to severe injuries he received while working a control burn on Sawtooth Mountain. ]

Richard “Rick” Glenn Lupe
May 18, 1960 – June 19, 2003
A true American Hero, recognized as one of our nation's greatest firefighters, died in the line of duty.

"Little do they know of our
Rodeo-Chediski Fire Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner, September 25, 2010
2. Rodeo-Chediski Fire Marker
Marker is at base of flag pole. The Richard Glenn Lupe Memorial Statue is seen in the foreground.
long labors on their behalf for the protection of their borders…
and, I grudge it not." J.R.R. Tolkien

Erected 2005 by The citizens of the White Mountains.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Disasters. A significant historical month for this entry is May 1838.
Location. 34° 8.902′ N, 109° 58.319′ W. Marker is in Lakeside, Arizona, in Navajo County. Marker is at the intersection of White Mountain Boulevard (Arizona Route 260) and Woodland Road, on the right when traveling west on White Mountain Boulevard. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Lakeside AZ 85929, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 3 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Lakeside (approx. one mile away); Showlow Valley Settlement (approx. 8 miles away); "show low and you win the ranch". (approx. 8 miles away).
Also see . . .
1. Information and Photos of the Rodeo-Chedicki Fire. Valinda Jo Elliot was beginning to panic. The lush pine forests that first seemed so refreshing, now felt forbidding. The 31-year-old hiker had been lost for three days. She was tired, dehydrated and desperate when she heard the rotors of a helicopter. Setting a small signal fire seemed the only way out of what, for her, was a nightmare. Her decision, though, kindled terror for thousands.
Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Memorial image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner
3. Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Memorial
(Submitted on October 9, 2010.) 

2. Obituary for Richard Glenn Lupe. (Submitted on October 9, 2010.)
Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner
4. Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Marker
Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Bill Kirchner
5. Richard "Rick" Glenn Lupe Marker
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on October 9, 2010, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. This page has been viewed 2,146 times since then and 22 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on October 9, 2010, by Bill Kirchner of Tucson, Arizona. • Syd Whittle was the editor who published this page.

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Jun. 5, 2023