The Passing of a Fire Service Legend: Don Anthony

Monday, June 12, 2006 |

It is with great sadness that the men and women of the Los Angeles Fire Department announce the passing of retired LAFD Deputy Chief Donald F. Anthony.

Anthony joined the Los Angeles Fire Department on November 1, 1956 and following a stellar career that spanned more than four decades, retired on July 6, 1997 as Chief Deputy of Operations.

Chief Anthony, a hugely popular and widely respected Fire Service leader, served the citizens of Los Angeles with distinction in key roles that changed not only the provision of emergency services in Los Angeles, but across the globe.

Chief Anthony's Memorial Service:

Tuesday, June 13, 2006
11:00 AM
Forest Lawn - Hollywood Hills (Hall of Liberty)
6300 Forest Lawn Drive
Los Angeles, CA 90068

(driving directions)

Members of the public, fire service and public safety agencies are cordially invited to attend the memorial service.

Firefighters and Fire Department Officers wishing to attend the memorial service as part of the Uniform Detail are asked to report to the Hall of Liberty at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills at 10:00AM, and be guided by Battalion Chief Joe Castro, the Uniform Detail Coordinator.

Fire apparatus participation will be at the discretion of each Fire Department and limited to one apparatus per agency. Fire Departments bringing apparatus are requested to stage their vehicles in formation at the memorial site and report to Battalion Chief Michael Bowman, the Apparatus Staging Officer.

A reception for active and retired members of the Fire Service will immediately follow at:

Los Angeles Fire Department
Fire Station 88
5101 North Sepulveda Boulevard
Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

A Map with Directions to the Fire Service Reception will be available on-site from the Apparatus Staging Officer.

In lieu of flowers, the family has kindly requested that a donation be made in honor of Donald F. Anthony to the:

Los Angeles Firemen's Relief Association
Widows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen's Fund
2900 West Temple Street
Los Angeles, CA 90026

Those desiring further information may contact the Office of the Community Liaison Officer, Battalion Chief Lou Roupoli at (213) 978-3810.

(images) (slideshow)

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department

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Anonymous said...

For those of you that didn't ever get to meet this man and spend some time with him you missed out. Old school attitude that talked the talk and walked the walk. "ONSCENE AND IN CHARGE"

Rest in peace Don!!!!

david barrett said...

Chief Anthony was involved in some of the most famous fires in the city's history, including the First Interstate Bank fire, the Kirkwood Bowl Brush fire, and the fire at the Proud Bird Restaurant, among others. And while considered old school and brash, his record shows he was effective in serious situations, to the benefit of the city and its residents. His wife helped create a video tape of his life on the job. Appropriately, it includes "On scene and in charge" in the title.

Anonymous said...

Although I did not get a chance to serve under Chief Anthony, I did get the opportunity to meet him and have heard numerous stories about him. My prayers go out to the whole Anthony family and if only we had more Chief's up-stairs like Chief Anthony!!!

Anonymous said...

Don Anthony was the drill master in my drill tower class in 1973. He demanded a lot from those that worked for him, because he demanded a lot from himself.

No matter how tough he was, he was always fair.

Don would never have anyone do a job that he himself wouldn't do.

Rest in Peace Don.

Anonymous said...

Repose in pace Chief Anthony. Gloria in excelsis deo, et in terra pax hominibus. Cum sanctus spiritus, in gloria dei patris, dei patris amen.

Anonymous said...

Chief Anthony.
On behalf of my father (LAFD: Capt. I, ret.) and my grandfather (LAFD: Fireboat Pilot, dec.), thank-you for being what you were - a tough, fair-minded, competent, iconic Firefighter.

When I think of a Fire Service "Commander" I will always picture your face.

Thank-you for leaving a legacy of fine example that the rest of us, with the necessary courage and conviction, may follow.

Jerry King said...

I knew Don from the time he drove Chief Langston until I retired in 1979. Don was a fireman's fireman, a fireman's Captain and a fireman's Chief. I know he will never be forgotten!
Good by for now Don.

redcup56 said...

Brian H/Brian B/Ron:

I couldn't find any coverage of Chief Anthony's funeral on the web. Are there any pictures or stories available that you could share?

Thank you,

Portland, OR

Anonymous said...

Many believe that Don Anthony should have been appointed Fire Chief in 1996, and that the LAFD wouldn't be in the mess it is now if he had been.

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...

Dear Anonymous:

Thanks for your comments.

I am not aware that Chief Anthony ever expressed a formal interest in being the City's Fire Chief (i.e. actually applying for the position).

He did however, verbalize a profound eagerness to retire when he did, after more than four decades of honorable service to our Department and its mission.

May he rest in well-earned peace.

Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

SMerrill said...

When I was a kid I played flag football with Chief Anthony's son James. I remember he was at every game. He was a loving father and a hero to all the people he served and protected. God Bless Chief Anthony.

Steve Merrill
Forest Lawn Memorial - Parks

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...

Mr. Merrill,

Thank you for sharing memories of a man who was and remains a fire service legend. Kindly also accept our thanks for the distinguished and dignified services to both the Anthony and LAFD families at the time of his passing.

Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

Robert Allen Schweim said...

Was just searching for people I worked with over my career, and found this information on the late Chief Don Anthony. I knew him as Capt. Anthony, when I served in the Medical Liaison Unit in the early 1970's. I also assisted Capt. Anthony as he headed the Safety, Physical Fitness Unit. There was no doubt that this man was squared away and destined for much higher, more responsible positions at LAFD. I am not surprised to learn of Don Anthony's many accomplishments, and am very proud to have worked for him.

Though just learning and feeling his passing, I will forever remember his wisdom, focus, and counsel. Belatedly, but sincerely, rest in peace, my Captain.

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