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Prescott appealing firefighter benefits ruling

FILE - This July 2, 2013 file photo shows Linda Lambert placing her hand across a plaque outside the Granite Mountain Interagency Hotshot Crew fire station, in Prescott, Ariz.  The plaque has the names of the 19 firefighters killed Sunday, by an out-of-control blaze near Yarnell, Ariz. Lambert is the aunt of firefighter Andrew Ashcraft. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)

FILE – This July 2, 2013 file photo shows Linda Lambert placing her hand across a plaque outside the Granite Mountain Interagency Hotshot Crew fire station, in Prescott, Ariz. The plaque has the names of the 19 firefighters killed Sunday, by an out-of-control blaze near Yarnell, Ariz. Lambert is the aunt of firefighter Andrew Ashcraft. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson, File)

PRESCOTT — Prescott is appealing a retirement board’s decision to grant benefits to one of the 19 Hotshots killed in the Yarnell Hill Fire.

The City Council voted 4-2 Tuesday to appeal in court the Prescott Public Safety Retirement Board’s May decision to grant retirement benefits to the family of Andrew Ashcraft.

The vote took place a day after Prescott held a memorial on the anniversary of the June 30, 2013 death of Ashcraft and 18 other members of the Prescott Fire Department’s Granite Mountain Hotshots.

They died when the wildfire swept over their position in a brush-choked canyon.

Ashcraft was among 13 Hotshots killed who were not classified as permanent employees.

Widow Juliann Ashcraft expressed disappointment with the council’s decision but expressed confidence that her benefits applications would ultimately be granted.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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