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Leadership/Management

Murdered Calif. Firefighter's Memorial Service Draws Hundreds

July 03—Hundreds of people gathered Tuesday morning for a memorial service for Long Beach Fire Capt. Dave Rosa, who was fatally shot June 25 as he responded to an explosion at a senior living complex.

The funeral was scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. in the Pacific Ballroom at the Long Beach Convention Center on Ocean Boulevard. Officials said it should last at least two hours.

A live stream of the service can be viewed here: http://www.longbeach.gov/

Authorities said a resident of Covenant Manor opened fire on Rosa, a 17-year veteran of the fire department, and firefighter Ernest Torres, who was wounded.

The resident, Thomas Kim, 77, allegedly set off an explosive device in an apparent attempt to kill a neighbor, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney's office. He has been charged with one count of murder, one count of attempted murder of a firefighter, two counts of attempted murder and one count each of arson of an inhabited structure and explosion with intent to murder.

Firefighter Jake Heflin, a department spokesman, said after Rosa's death that he worked on a paramedic unit at Station 9 with the slain firefighter early in his career, about 16 years ago.

"He was somebody you always wanted with you. He was a firefighter's firefighter.... He always had your back. He would always take care of you," Heflin said. That was evident on Monday, he said, when Rosa "was first through that door."

"This is a tough day," Fire Chief Mike DuRee said the day Rosa was killed, his voice choking and his eyes welling with tears.

Rosa, 45, is survived by his wife and two sons, ages 25 and 16.

On Tuesday morning, a long line of firefighters stood at attention as his flag-draped casket was escorted into the Convention Center.

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