Posted: 10:50 p.m.
Somerton/Cocopah firefighter Robby Rodriguez was deployed to help in the affected communities after the Yarnell Hill fire killed 19 Prescott firefighters.
He is part of the Local Assistance State Team (LAST) of Arizona, which helps off the fire lines, within the communities, including with the grieving families.
"It blows me away. The whole town, as you can imagine, has been affected by this because they know the firefighters and hold them in such high regard," Rodriguez said.
This is Rodriguez's fourth time being deployed through LAST.
He said he has been non-stop busy working with many Arizona fire chiefs, including Prescott Fire Chief Dan Fraijo, whose department suffered an immense loss.
"It was an honor to meet him. He is emotionally where you would expect. He lost 19 members of his department. That's like losing the entire Somerton-Cocopah department."
At this time, Yuma County fire departments have not been requested to assist in the Yarnell Hill fire.
Nevertheless, all of the fire community is devastated.
Rodriguez's assignments come daily, so he said he could be helping in Prescott through the funerals of the victims.
The loss has been overwhelming, but Rodriguez said he is honored to serve the community during this time.
"It's very difficult at times because we are human, and we have emotions, too. Sometimes, when you're by yourself, you kind of reflect on how you spent your day."
The 100 Club of Arizona has set up a memorial fund for victims' families. Fire officials consider the organization, which raises money to assist first responders, to be a reputable one.
To donate, visit www.100club.org.