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Robert Sallee dies at 82; last survivor of deadly Mann Gulch fire
Robert Sallee dies at 82; last survivor of deadly Mann Gulch fire

Robert Sallee, the last survivor of the 1949 Mann Gulch fire in Montana that killed 13 smokejumpers in one of the U.S. Forest Service's worst firefighting disasters, died Monday in Spokane, Wash. He was 82. He had been in poor health following heart surgery, said his sister Theodora Sallee. Sallee was a 17-year-old smokejumper during the Montana fire, memorialized in Norman Maclean's best-selling book, "Young Men and Fire." The deaths led to reforms in wildland firefighting and safety training. For decades, Sallee remained silent about his experience at Mann Gulch. "I think it was too traumatizing," his sister said. "Not only did he survive, but when the rescue crews came, he had to...

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