Please Join Me & Send Some Love

Brian Hughes of the Arrowhead Hotshots
Brian Hughes of the Arrowhead Hotshots

Earlier this week, I learned that a man who helped St. John so much following the hurricanes last fall was killed while working to help another community. Brian Hughes, a member of the elite Arrowhead Hotshots, was killed while battling a fire near Yosemite National Park last Sunday. Mr. Hughes and the Hotshots were one of the first groups of people who came to St. John’s aid last September.

The Arrowhead Hotshots arrived just days after the storms, according to Christy McManus, social media and web coordinator for the Virgin Islands National Park. “They lived and worked in the worst conditions right along with those of us that chose to stay,” Christy said. “They dug us out so we could get from Cruz Bay all the way to Hurricane Hole.”

According to Christy, the Hotshots cleared more than 26 miles of roads and trails. They also cleared roughly 11 acres of beaches.

“They were instrumental on getting our park back on its feet and making it possible for other teams to follow behind them,” Christy said.

Arrowhead Hotshots clearing map
This map shows the amount of work completed by the Arrowhead Hotshots. (Click to enlarge.)

So seeing that we’re known as being Love City, I thought we could extend some love to the family of Mr. Hughes, including his wife who is currently three months pregnant with their first child, and to his fellow Hotshots crew. So please, if you will, leave a note here in the Comments section, or over on our Facebook page, and let them know how much we appreciate them and the work of Mr. Hughes.

And for those of you who are able, a GoFundMe page has been started to help Mr. Hughes’s wife. You can click here to view it.

22 thoughts on “Please Join Me & Send Some Love”

  1. such a heartbreaking story to learn we lost such a giving and brave soul.
    and to his wife, stay strong ! and now we’re headed to the gofundme page.

  2. Dear Mrs. Hughes, No words can express our sympathy for you in this time of deep sorrow. May you find comfort in the way your husband lived his life: he truly made a difference in a way few could. Many people lived because of how he lived and now will never forget him. We hold you and your baby close in prayer.

  3. This is heartbreaking, thank you so much for your service and hard work. It’s a special soul that does such selfless work for others, rest easy hero. Sending much love and hugs to your family.

  4. My deepest sympathies are with his family. We will forever be greatful for his support during our time of need. A very honorable man to put his life on the line to help others.

  5. My husband and I are heartbroken to hear about Brian Hughes’ untimely death. We are long time part time residents of St. John and so deeply appreciate the extraordinary work that Brian and his Hotshot team did when they came to St. John during the worst of times on this island.We are now driving the roads and using the beaches all these heroes cleared for us and we are extremely grateful. We send our deepest sympathy and heartfelt thanks to Brian’s wife and all those who knew and loved him.

  6. My heartfelt sympathy goes out to your family. I will think of you when I’m hiking the trails on St John . Thank you for your service and helping those in need.

  7. Brian’s selfless service to those in need is deeply respected and admired. His sacrifice was a terrible tragedy but his efforts will forever be appreciated by so many. My thoughts and prayers are with Mrs. Hughes during such a difficult time. May many happy memories get her through the tough times.

  8. Such a devastating loss. In a media laden society it is a shame that the heroic actions of such heroes go untold! Thank you Jenn for sharing. Mrs.Hughes there are never enough words to express our heart felt sorrow for your loss. Godspeed to you, your family and The Hotshots!

  9. So sorry to learn the name of an unsung hero under such circumstances. Mrs. hughes your husbands efforts helped more people than we may ever fully know. Prayers to you and your family.

  10. Very sad news. Heartfelt condolences to you Mrs Hughes and your entire family! Brian was a hero and touched so many people with his hard work and dedication. Prayers to all of you.

  11. A true hero!! We thank him and the Hotshots team for all their hard work!! My prayers are with you and your family. ❤️

  12. Heartbreaking news to hear about a man who did so much so that others could live their lives….sending many prayers to you, his wife and your beautiful unborn baby who I pray knows of his/her Dad’s wonderful
    heart, strength and compassion thru so many others who’s lives he touched! Many Blessings, please stay strong, Anna M. (a long time visitor and
    hopeful resident of the astounding Island of St. John.

  13. It is special Spirits such as this that helped St. John during the largest need ever! Thank You, Thank You! Heartfelt condolences to his wife & lovely child he will meet “some day”…until then, know the child holds the His Life that will Carry On

  14. It is special Spirits such as this that helped St. John during the largest need ever! Thank You, Thank You! Heartfelt condolences to his wife & lovely child he will meet “some day”…until then, know the child holds His Life that will Carry On

  15. We were told many months ago to “always look for the helpers.” Thank you Mr Hughes for being one of those beautiful souls that come to the rescue of those when it is needed the most. The hope that you provided to so many is immeasurable. Thoughts and prayers are with your family.

  16. Stories such as this I think make us all stop and realize how blessed we are to have people on our earth who are a shining example of what is good and right. Thank you for giving us that moment today and God bless you and your family for your service it takes a special person. Prayers and peace and strength to the family.

  17. Dear Mrs. Hughes and baby, I send the deepest felt love and mounds of gratitude to you both. Brian was amazing in his service to us during an intensely challenging time. His spirit was so strong and kind. Thank you for sharing him with so many of us in times of crisis. I am deeply sorry for your loss and hope that you and baby Hughes will be surrounded by the same love and generosity you and Brian have given so many. Blessings!

  18. I had the honor of sitting on a plane with the Arrowhead Hotshots as they flew home to California after giving Love City so much help following Irma and Maria. I was so awed with this group of impressive heroes and I am so saddened to hear of your loss Mrs Hughes. Know that those of us your husband helped here will never forget his service. Peace and Love to you and your family.

  19. There are special people in this world who give their heart and soul to help others in times of need. Thank you Brian for seeing a need and being brave enough to fufill
    it. Mrs. Hughes God bless you and your family. We appreciate all the sacrifice.
    Prayers and God’s blessings.

  20. I was so sorry to hear about this. I have just posted a donation on the GoFundMe account. It is so heartwarming to see how generous people have been.

    We live in Wisconsin and have family on St John. Our son was on island for both storms and all the nightmarish aftermath. News of St John was our lifeline for information, since cell service was almost nonexistent. It is a season our family will never forget.

    We have the utmost gratitude to the brave and strong helpers who came down and gave their effort so selflessly. All we can do to express our appreciation is to make a contribution in Brian Hughes’s memory. To his family and friends, deepest thanks and sympathy.

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