Third District Supervisor Jeff Stone was at the command post facing the tragedy of the Esperanza Fire. He offered his heartfelt condolences to the family and friends of the fallen firefighters and spearheaded the cash rewards ($100,000, to be raised by others to more than $500,000) for the conviction of the arsonist. At the same time his sister, Lori Stone, called him to let him know her idea and he answered, “Absolutely.”
She said, “Helping in a crisis is [Jeff’s] second nature.” She was soon in touch with what she calls her “Three Special Angels.”
“These Angels will be in my heart forever,” she said.
Lori called the Menifee-Sun City Chamber of Commerce to get the funeral director’s name (Evans-Brown Mortuary in Sun City) and phone number.
When director Thad Luyben, Jr. listened to her request he had no hesitation. He simply said, “Absolutely.”
Lori’s next call was to Denny Mighell with Temecula’s People Helping People. Being familiar with pleas of help he instantly said, “No problem.”
She contacted florist Rick Crimeni at Arrange Gallery in Hemet. “Absolutely.”
Her three angels then started spreading their love to many, many others.
Angel number one, Luyben from Evans-Brown, donated four separate and unique funeral services that will long be remembered by family and friends. The Miller Jones funeral home also made no hesitation and donated their services.
There are so many personal things needed when making arrangements for the hardest thing a family has to face: the death of a loved one.
Angel number two, Mighell at People Helping People, called Fire Rose Limo and CEO Limo, who donated their limo services for all five funerals. Paradise Chevrolet in Temecula made sure extra cars were available for the services.
Angel number three, Arrange Gallery’s Crimeni, contributed all of the beautiful flower arrangements for each service and the televised unified memorial.
In addition, a great deal of food was needed and donated by the San Bernardino Costco and Temecula’s own Presto’s Gourmet Express.
Lori said she is so very proud of the third district’s “stand-up cooperation and generosity.” She says they deserve many heartfelt thanks and have asked for none.
Each family had its own special needs and requests for saying goodbye to their loved ones. Lori Stone and her “Third District Angels” made sure everything was taken care of professionally and compassionately for the families of the fallen firefighters of Engine 57.