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Local Search and Rescue pilot killed fighting Oregon fires

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GALLATIN COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE

GALLATIN COUNTY – It is with great sadness that Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office announces that Tom Duffy, a Gallatin County Sheriff’s Search and Rescue helicopter pilot, was killed in a firefighting accident in Oregon Monday, Aug. 24. He was conducting bucket drops on the White Fire to help firefighters battle the blaze, which was burning in rough terrain in Mount Hood National Forest.

Tom is the third generation of the Duffy family to fly rescue missions for SAR. He has flown SAR rescue missions for 20 years and his most recent missions was on Aug 15, when he flew three times for the GCSAR helicopter team. Tom was a world-class rescue pilot who instilled confidence in SAR volunteers on every mission. He was a big man with a big heart who brought calm and skill to every mission.

When God opened a door, Tom walked through it, which led him to many adventures and skills. In addition to flying, he was a husband, father, business owner and church member. He went big in everything he did and will be deeply missed in the GCSAR community and beyond.

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