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Yuba City Firefighter dies in helicopter crash

Photo courtesy of U.S. Forest Service

According to the U.S. Forest Service, 41-year-old Daniel J. Laird, a firefighter of Yuba City, Cali. And a Helitack captain from the Tahoe National Forest was helping with a controlled burn on Wednesday in the Sam Houston National Forest in Texas when the helicopter went down.

Officials from San Houston National Forest released a statement on Friday following the incident.

“His passion was in aviation, but he was also known for his ability to lead a strike team of engines or a task force of hand crews and heavy equipment,” wrote Joe Navratil, Director of Public Affairs and Communications for the Forest Service. “He was a true leader in every sense.”

Laird is survived by his daughter and wife.

The cause of the crash is still unclear but is currently under investigation by the FAA and NTSB.

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