Jesse Steed, 36

Jesse Steed was the captain of the Granite Mountain Hotshots and its longest-serving member, having traded a job as a Prescott firefighter to battle flames in the wilderness he so loved. He used to ride his mountain bike through rugged trails just for the thrill of it, said his older brother Cassidy, a police officer in Renton, Wash. He was also a jokester — he liked to make faces and talk with funny voices to make people laugh.

His true passion, though, was fighting fires, and helping others was his calling. He served in the Marine Corps for four years before becoming a firefighter, and he joined the Granite Mountain Hotshots just as the team was established in 2002.

“Jesse always put his life on the line for people who he knew he would never meet,” his brother said.

Mr. Steed played on his high school soccer team and was also a skilled horseshoe player. Once, he beat the mayor of Prescott in a charity tournament organized by the fire department to raise money for a local food pantry.

Above all, Mr. Steed was a family man, his brother said. He leaves his wife, Desiree, and two children — a son, Caden, who is 4, and a daughter, Cambria, who is 3.

— FERNANDA SANTOS
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