Flags lowered to half-staff in honor of fallen Medford firefighter

SALEM, Ore. – Governor Kate Brown ordered all flags at Oregon public institutions to be flown at half-staff on Thursday, September 9 to honor Frumencio Ruiz Carapia, a Medford firefighter who died in the line of duty.

Ruiz Carapia was fighting the Gales Fire in Lane County on August 23 when he was killed by a falling tree.

“All of us that are firefighters understand the dangers of this job,” said A. Tovia, a friend and colleague of Carapia. “Besides the fact that he was my worker, he was also my friend, one of many that I have here on my team, and that’s why it hurts so much.”

On September 8, Governor Kate Brown said, “On behalf of the State of Oregon and a grateful community, I would like to extend my deepest condolences to the family of Frumencio Ruiz Carapia. Wildland firefighting is often difficult and dangerous work that requires those who do it to leave those they love and cherish to protect people they may never meet. We honor the memory of Mr. Ruiz Carapia and will remember his sacrifice.”

The flag order coincides with the date of Ruiz Carapia’s memorial service. According to the governor’s office, he’ll be honored at noon on Thursday, September 9 at the Jackson County Expo’s Olsrud Arena in Central Point. The public is invited, but seating will be limited due to COVID-19 protocols.

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