Rescued California Firefighter Released from Burn Unit


A California firefighter who was rescued last month by a pilot after being burned in the Harris Fire was released from the burn unit Monday.

The University of California, San Diego Regional Burn Center said Andrew Pikop, 23, was released from the burn unit Monday.

Pikop was one of five people rescued by Mike Wagstaff along the U.S.-Mexico border on Oct. 21. He was part of a crew of four firefighters who were trying to save a father and son who were stranded in a hilltop home.

The father, Thomas Varshock, died in the fire. The son and the four firefighters were transported to the UCSD Medical Center's burn unit.

Pikop is a firefighter with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. He is based in San Diego but is originally from Northern California.

Previous Stories:

  • October 31, 2007: Air, Ground Heroics Saved Doomed Firefighters
  • October 30, 2007: Hero Discusses Firefighters' Rescue