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Michigan adds tribute to fallen wildland firefighter

Wildland firefighter Collin Hagan will be honored at a memorial service for close friends and family Thursday, Aug. 18, at Michigan Technological University in Houghton.

Members of the public who wish to honor Hagan may view the livestreamed service on Facebook hosted by the National Interagency Fire Center.

Hagan, 27, was originally from Twin Lakes, southwest of Houghton in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. He was a firefighter with the federal Craig Interagency Hotshot Crew, based in Colorado, and was working on the Big Swamp Wildfire near Oakridge, Oregon, on Aug. 10 when he was struck by a falling tree.  

Dan Laux, fire section chief in the Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ Forest Resources Division, knew Hagan well.

“Watching Collin grow up to become a young man with such a passion for the outdoors, adventure and wildland fire was an honor and privilege,” Laux said. “His life was an inspiration to so many and he will be dearly missed.”

Hagan graduated from Jeffers High School (Painesdale, Michigan) in 2013, going on to earn an associate degree in forest technology from Gogebic Community College and a bachelor’s degree in forest management from Michigan Technological University.

Before joining the Craig hotshot crew – specialized firefighting teams that mobilize in the most rugged conditions – Hagan worked as a field forester and for other firefighting teams in Oregon and Montana.

He loved the outdoors and enjoyed hunting, fishing, hockey and skateboarding. Family and friends remember his easygoing demeanor and sense of humor, and as a person who thought of others first.

Visitation is Thursday and Friday; a private funeral also is scheduled Friday. 

Media contact: Kirby Shedlowski (U.S. Bureau of Land Management), 303-842-4458