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Fallen Air Tanker Crew Honored

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A memorial honoring three crew members killed when their air tanker crashed battling a Sierra Nevada wildfire nearly a year ago has been dedicated at a ceremony in Walker. More than 200 people, including family members, gathered at the crash site along U-S 395 to pay tribute to pilot Steve Wass, co-pilot Craig Labare and flight engineer Mike Davis. A memorial rock and plaque with their names were unveiled at the site in Walker, 90 miles south of Reno. Event coordinator Dianne Evans of Walker praised the men on Saturday. He says they helped save the community. The three men died June 17th, 2002 when their C-130-A air tanker crashed while dropping retardant on the nearly 23-thousand-acre Cannon Fire. Since then, the Forest Service has stopped using C-130-As for fighting fires.