The volunteers of the Sierra Madre 4th of July Committee are pleased and excited to announce that the 2018 Fourth of July Parade Grand Marshal will be Sierra Madre’s very own Steve Heydorff. The Grand Marshal is a person, or persons, whose efforts over a long period of time have been beneficial to the community of Sierra Madre. The title of Grand Marshal is intended to honor a person or persons’ volume of work, dedication, and overall enhancements to our community. Steve recently retired as Sierra Madre’s Fire Chief after serving 37 years (mostly volunteer) on the Sierra Madre Fire Department. Steve really is our Hometown Hero making a difference in our lives every day.
Steve spent the last 39 years making Sierra Madre his home. He moved here in 1979 with his wife Lynette and eventually they raised two daughters, Farrell and Gillian. His first volunteer act was the building of a covered bridge in the Sierra Madre Canyon on Brookside Lane.
Chief Heydorff joined the then Volunteer Fire Department in 1981, became a volunteer Engineer in 1985, volunteer EMT in 1988, volunteer Captain in 1989, and in 2001, continuing his volunteer duties, began serving part-time in the City’s Fire Prevention Bureau.
In 1993 serving on a State Strike Team, Steve visited four major fires in a 56 hour period including Kineloa-Mesa, Anaheim Hills, Laguna and Malibu. In 2002, he was promoted to volunteer Battalion Chief and in 2003 spent a month helping in Mississippi and Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina. In 2006, he was hired by the City as the Director of Fire Services and in 2007 was elected as the City’s last and final Volunteer Fire Chief. The position was transitioned to a paid Chief by the City in 2008. Over the course of his service in Sierra Madre he responded to over 9,000 calls, was the leading force to bring paramedic service to the community, and assisted the City with the transition from the last volunteer fire department in Los Angeles County to a combination model. His final act was to create a children’s education area next to the Station so youth tours could continue and kids could learn what firefighters do while on the job.
In his free time, Steve and local firefighter Charlie Childs opened the Sierra Madre Brewing Company in 1997 at the Old Ice House on Montecito and he got his pilot’s license.
Steve proudly states that his biggest accomplishment is seeing all the career firefighters who began their careers volunteering right here in Sierra Madre, finding their passion and following their dreams.
Steve, a true Hometown Hero, is a dedicated husband, father, and friend to many. He is funny, kind, generous, and a whole-heartedly devoted contributor to our town. He is a shining example of the sort of person who makes Sierra Madre such a magical place to live.
For more information on all of the 4th of July Festivities, please visit www.sierramadre4thofjuly.com.