The men and women of your Los Angeles Fire Department are deeply saddened to announce the passing of a legendary member of our agency.
Arnett Hartsfield, Jr. was a Serviceman, Firefighter, Instructor and while employed as a firefighter, became an attorney to continue to work against injustice and inequality.
Hartsfield was appointed to the LAFD in 1940 and served for 20 years. He worked at Station 30 in East Los Angeles. While firefighting, he used his GI Bill to go back to school and attend both UCLA and USC and earned a law degree in 1955. He retired in 1961 to practice law fulltime.
Arnett, affectionately known as the "Rookie" led the fight to integrate the LAFD. One of the founding members of the Stentorians, he was widely respected for his ability to educate the masses on issues of fundamental fairness. He also served as the African American Firefighter Museum’s historian, where he spent ten hours a week volunteering and touching the lives of all who meet him.
In his later years he said he felt that he had so much to smile about, including his wife and five beautiful children. He was 95 years young at the time of his passing.
For those who never had the honor of knowing him, please click on the video link below, which is full of moving testimonials. May he rest in peace. Funeral arrangements are pending.
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