NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – The U.S. Forest Service is mourning the death of a wildlife firefighter who died while fighting the Eicks Fire in Hildago County, New Mexico. In a press release, the Forest Service reports Tim Hart of Wyoming has died.
Hart sustained critical injuries on May 24, 2021, following a hard landing after parachuting into the rocky terrain in the Animas Mountains. According to the Forest Service, Hart began his career in wildland firefighting in 2006 on the Coconino National Forest and then in the Fremont-Winema National Forest as an engine crew member.
Hart joined the Shoshone National Forest as a lead forestry technician in 2009 and was a lead firefighter on the Asheville Interagency Hotshot Crew in 2010. Hart later worked for the Bureau of Land Management on the Ruby Mountain Hotshot Crew before joining the smokejumper program in 2016 and relocating to Grangeville, Idaho.
He traveled to West Yellowstone, Montana as a smokejumper squad leader and in 2020 became a spotter. The Forest Service reports that memorial service information is not yet available.
“I am deeply saddened to share that Tim Hart, a Forest Service Smokejumper, has died from injuries sustained on May 24 while responding to the Eicks Fire in Hildago County, New Mexico. Our hearts go out to Tim’s family, loved ones, friends, fellow Forest Service employees, and the entire wildland fire community and I ask that you keep them in your thoughts and prayers during this time of sorrow while respecting the family’s privacy.”U.S. Forest Service