A missing fire crew that was last heard from three days ago was found alive and well; along with the first two rescue parties who disappeared looking for the crew.
The California forest fire that began six days ago, was thought to be coming under control until the firefighters went missing three days ago in a remote mountain area they were working. The first rescue squad of ten firefighters began searching for the men after not being heard from for eight hours. The rescue squad reported in to the command center several times then after six hours the command center lost contact with the men. A second rescue team of eight men were quickly dispatched to the area and were reported missing twelve hours later.
Aircrafts attempted to locate the squads from the air but were unable due to thick smoke.
A break in the investigation came when fire personnel spotted a pizza delivery vehicle headed up the mountain on an old service road that the fire crews had used.
"I couldn't believe what I was seeing," stated fire chief David Blaze. "We were monitoring the mountain when I spotted something flash from that direction. I was amazed when I seen the pizza delivery sign on top of a vehicle that was headed up the mountain toward the fires."
Law enforcement personnel were dispatched to the area but lost sight of the vehicle as it crested over the mountain. An hour later the vehicle was stopped as it was headed back down the mountain.
A sheriffs deputy who questioned the driver stated, "I asked the driver what he was doing in the area and was surprised when the driver said he had made a dozen pizza deliveries the last three days to firemen in a valley on the other side of the mountain."
The delivery man stated at first it was ten large pizzas, then the next day it was twenty pizzas and there were more fireman than there were the first time. The calls for more pizza and Pepsi kept coming in. The last delivery was for thirty large sausage and pepperoni pizzas.
The driver agreed to escort the deputies to the area. When deputies arrived, they found a total of forty-two firemen sitting around eating pizza and playing video games on TV's they had delivered along with a generator… One firemen yelled, "Shit… it's the cops man, hide the s-t-a-s-h."
Another fireman said, "what stash, man?" Then stumbled to the ground laughing.
Law enforcement personal noticed a smoldering marijuana field that was approximately one-hundred yards by one-hundred yards. All personnel at the scene had determined it to be too unsafe to finish the rescue due to the raging forest fire and were camping out until deemed safe enough to come down; from the mountain that is.