By Steve Yamamoto | November 9, 2011
It is with great sadness that the Long Beach Fire Department (LBFD) announces the death of active duty Fire Engineer Darren Rockett. Engineer Rockett was born on November 10th 1963. He graduated from Van Nuys High School in 1981 and attended Santa Ana College where he studied Fire Technology. He married his wife Jeanne on July 27th, 1989 and together they have been raising their family in Long Beach since 1992. Engineer Rockett, a 14 year veteran of the LBFD, was appointed to the department on September 22, 1997. He served as a Firefighter at Station 10 and 11, promoted to Fire Engineer on June 6th, 2002 where he served at Stations 11 and 18. At the time of his death, Fire Engineer Darren Rockett was assigned to the Fire Prevention Bureau where his chief responsibility was a life safety inspector for all high-rise buildings in the City of Long Beach. During his career at the LBFD Engineer Rockett was recognized for his volunteer leadership of the LBFD Rescue Youth Program where students spend time with their firefighter mentor at a fire station near their homes and are taught various skills, including first aid, and CPR.
“Engineer Rockett was only recently assigned to the Fire Prevention Bureau where he quickly established himself as a competent and professional Inspector. His years of experience in fire operations made him uniquely qualified to evaluate the life safety requirements of high-rise buildings. He exhibited an admirable work ethic and his enduring approach to his coworkers made him very popular. He will be deeply missed.” -Deputy Chief Jeff Reeb, Fire Marshal, City of Long Beach.
Engineer Rockett was awarded nine LBFD Commendations, two LBFD Unit Citations, two Los Angeles County Unit Citations, and one Los Angeles County Meritorious Award. He was named LBFD Firefighter of the year in 2005.
“Darren was a humble, soft-spoken man. He typifies what it means to be a firefighter and what they represent. His peers recognized him in 2005 when he was selected as the Department’s Sworn Employee of the Year for his professionalism and community service in both his personal and professional life. His sudden loss is profound and will be felt by all the members of his fire family and the community in which he served. Our hearts go out to his wife, family and friends. Their loss is our loss.” – Fire Chief Alan Patalano, City of Long Beach.
Pastor Wayne Chaney Jr. of the Antioch Church of Long Beach appointed Darren as a church Deacon. As a Deacon, he had a passion for serving the Church, where he influenced people with his warmth, sincerity, and love of Jesus. “Darren Rockett was loved and admired by his fellow Firefighters, family, and friends.” – Jeanne Rockett
Engineer Rockett passed away at Los Alamitos Medical Center on November 6th, 2011. His mother Sydney Harston preceded him in death. His wife Jeanne, his daughters Tiffany, Alyse, Sydney, Daryn, and his father Victor Rockett survive him.
A Memorial Service is scheduled for November 18th, 2011 with a location to be determined.
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