A trust fund has been established for the family of San Luis Obispo Fire Chief John Callahan, who died of a massive heart attack Aug. 18 while playing softball with the city league at Santa Rosa Park.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in the name of “Callahan Family Trust Fund” at any Mission Community Bank.
A candlelight vigil will be held tonight, starting at 7:30 p.m. at Fire Station 1, located at 2160 Santa Barbara Ave. San Luis Obispo firefighters have requested that attendees dress in casual attire – specifically, a Hawaiian shirt, or what they termed “Jimmy Buffet” style.
Callahan, 61, spent the past five years as the chief of the San Luis Obispo Fire Department and 32 years with the Los Angeles Fire Department, where he worked his way up the organization, retiring as a deputy chief.
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The San Luis Obispo City Council during a special meeting on Thursday voted 4-0-1 to declare Friday’s memorial services for Callahan a city event and cover the costs associated with having public safety staff at the service. Councilman Allen Settle was absent.
On Friday, a procession of the hearse and two fire engines, one from San Luis Obispo and the other from the Los Angeles City Fire Department, will start at 8 a.m., traveling from Reis Family Mortuary to Grand Avenue. There, the chief’s casket will be transferred to a horse-drawn 1906 Seagrave Chemical Wagon used by San Luis Obispo City Firefighters in the early 1900s.
The procession will continue up Grand Avenue to the Performing Arts Center at Cal Poly, where the memorial will be held from 10 a.m. to noon, followed by a reception at the Madonna Expo Center, from noon to 4 p.m., at 100 Madonna Road.
The city’s share of the costs associated with the service is not yet known; City Manager Katie Lichtig estimated the hard costs associated with the use of the Performing Arts center to be less than $5,000.
-- Cynthia Lambert