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Memorial service for Cody smokejumper set for Saturday
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Memorial service for Cody smokejumper set for Saturday

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Tim Hart

West Yellowstone smokejumper Tim Hart is pictured in this courtesy photo.

Tim Hart, a smokejumper from Cody who died earlier this month from injuries he suffered while responding to a fire in New Mexico, will be honored Saturday at a memorial service.

The service is set for 11 a.m. at the Cody High School football stadium, according to a U.S. Forest Service announcement. The stadium will open an hour earlier.

Hart served at the West Yellowstone Smokejumper Base in the Custer Gallatin Forest. He was injured May 24 while responding to the Eicks Fire in Hidalgo County, New Mexico. He experienced a hard landing after parachuting into rocky terrain.

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“We are feeling profound loss with Tim’s passing — particularly our smokejumper and firefighting communities,” said Kathy Minor, acting Custer Gallatin National Forest supervisor. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Tim’s family and friends during this very difficult time. Tim’s thorough approach, kindness, sense of humor, love of music and leadership in the smokejumping community will be very deeply missed but never forgotten.”

Hart lived in Cody with his wife Michelle and their dog Dash, according to the Forest Service. He worked as a firefighter in several national forests including the Coconino, the Fremont-Winema and the Shoshone. He became a smokejumper in 2016 and served in Idaho before he relocated to West Yellowstone.

Hart, who was originally from Illinois, and his wife shared a passion for music, and his instrument of choice was the banjo, according to a post on memorial blog established after his death.

The post noted that Hart was “an instrumental part of the West Yellowstone Smokejumper Base.”

“Smokejumpers and wildland firefighters are tight-knit brothers and sisters,” base staff wrote in a statement posted to the Custer Gallatin National Forest Facebook page. “When a line of duty death occurs, it affects the entire community. Our hearts, thoughts and deepest sympathies are with the family of Tim Hart during this unimaginable hardship. He was a brother to many of us.”

A livestream of Hart’s memorial will be available through the Custer Gallatin National Forest Facebook page.


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Joshua Wolfson joined the Star-Tribune in 2007, covering crime and health before taking over the arts section in 2013. He also served as managing editor before being named editor in June 2017. He lives in Casper with his wife and their two kids.

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