A memorial service has been scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 8, to pay homage to Santa Barbara firefighter Robert Moseley, who died last Saturday at 51 years of age after suffering a heart attack while on duty.
The service will begin at 10:30 a.m. at the Old Mission Santa Barbara, followed by a procession of fire engines and safety vehicles lead by the California Professional Firefighters Association Pipe and Drum Corp.
Capt. Charlie Johnson of the Santa Barbara County Fire Dept. said they are anticipating 25 to 30 fire engines from all over California to join in the procession.
“People don’t always understand, but when a [firefighter] dies in the line of duty, it becomes a nationwide thing,” he said. “Engines are coming from as far down south as San Diego and from Northern California.”
The procession will travel down Laguna Street to the intersection of Mission Street where they will drive onto Highway 101 northbound to Gaviota State Park beach. A Chumash spiritual leader will then perform a blessing at the end of the Gaviota Pier and Moseley’s family will board a vessel off the coast to have a family service on the ship.
The fire dept.’s service will conclude with a reception at the Gaviota State Park for Moseley’s friends and co-workers. Johnson said the Moseley family wanted to spend time at Fire Station 18 in Gaviota, where Moseley spent the last few of his 21 years with the department.
Moseley collapsed while he was clearing vegetation and brush on the Wildland Training Course behind Fire Station 18. Johnson said that, coincidentally, Moseley had worked on the training course trail and just a couple of months ago his co-workers dedicated the trail to him and named it Moseley Trail prior to his death.
“It was nice and fortunate that he was still alive when they named the trail after him,” he said. “Now it’s like his legacy. He was such an incredibly nice guy, people wanted to do things like that for him.”
Moseley’s family has also requested that in lieu of flowers, anybody wishing to do something in Moseley’s honor make a contribution to the Santa Barbara County Firefighter Benevolent Foundation, in care of Santa Barbara Bank and Trust, account number 09124009.