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Rep. Gosar asks Navy to consider naming ship after fallen hotshots

(AP Photo)

PHOENIX – An Arizona congressman has reached out to the Navy asking that a ship be named to honor 19 firefighters who died on the job nearly seven years ago.

U.S. Rep. Paul Gosar said that the name USS Granite Mountain “would be a great honor for the Navy and the lost firefighters,” in a letter Monday to retired Rear Admiral Samuel Cox, director of the Naval History and Heritage Command.

The Prescott dentist said he had been approached by Fire Chief Dennis Light and others in his district about the possibility of bestowing the name on a San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock.

“They fought this fire to their death, something that would reflect well for the fighting spirit of a naval war ship,” the Republican lawmaker wrote.

There was an unnamed ship under construction as of a year ago.

The Granite Mountain Hotshots were killed during the Yarnell Hill Fire in June 2013. Only one crew member, who was acting as lookout and was separated from the group, survived.

The Navy has been building the 13 vessels in the class of landing platform since 2000. The warship is 684 feet long and 105 feet wide, designed to carry sailors, Marines and 14 amphibious assault vehicles.

The Secretary of the Navy ultimately decides on the names of the vessels.

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