Funeral procession held for firefighters killed in helicopter crash

Cal Fire honored two of their own who were killed in a helicopter crash with a funeral procession through the Inland Empire on Thursday, August 10. Cal Fire Assistant Chief Joshua Bishoff and Captain Tim Rodriguez died when their helicopter collided with another Cal Fire chopper over the weekend.

"They were outstanding firefighters, they were good family men, they were good friends," said Cal Fire Captain Dave Bell. "They are going to be missed tremendously."

Bishoff and Rodriguez were moved from the Riverside County Coroner's Office to the funeral home in Menifee. As is tradition, multiple agencies came out to pay their respect to the fallen heroes. 

CHP and the Riverside County Sheriff's Department lead the way in the funeral procession as a Cal Fire helicopter followed the hearses overhead.

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Residents were invited out to pay their respects to the two men.

"The fire service is one giant family," said Cal Fire family member Kitty Alvarado. "My heart goes out to the chief."

An investigation is underway as to how Bishoff and Rodriguez's collided with the fellow helicopter while flying over a brush fire in Riverside County on Sunday, August 6. The crash killed all on board, including pilot Tony Sousa.

"They're the guys you want out there helping you," said Bell. "Nobody can replace them."