Firefighter Charles Morton, Killed While Battling El Dorado Fire, Brought Back To Orange County

ORANGE (CBSLA) — The firefighter who died in the El Dorado Fire was escorted Tuesday to a mortuary in Orange by an honor guard from the U.S. Forest Service and members of the California Highway Patrol.

Charles Edward Morton, 39, was a squad boss with the Big Bear Interagency Hotshots, a team of elite specialists that works in the toughest, most remote areas of wildfires. Morton died Thursday, according to San Bernardino National Forest officials.

Morton’s cause of death was not released.

(credit: CBS)

The 14-year Forest Service firefighter was taken from San Bernardino County Coroner’s Division to Ferrara & Lee Colonial Mortuary in Orange. Local firefighters lined the route, with many standing at attention and saluting to honor Morton.

Morton was born in San Diego. He joined the California Conservation Corps at the Butte Fire Center in Magalia in 2002, then began working for the U.S. Forest Service in 2006 with the Truckee Interagency Hotshots on the Tahoe National Forest. He joined the San Bernardino national Forest the following year.

He is survived by his wife and daughter, his parents and two brothers.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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