Fundraiser for highway signs honoring fallen Tahoe firefighter | SierraSun.com

Fundraiser for highway signs honoring fallen Tahoe firefighter

Staff report

Michael “Mikey” Hallenbeck, a 21-year-old ski lift operator and wildland firefighter in the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, died while fighting the Sierra Fire in August 2015.

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — The parents of a Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit wildland firefighter who died line of duty are raising money to install memorial signs on a stretch of highway that has already been designated in their son's name.

Michael "Mikey" Hallenbeck, of Shingle Springs, Calif., was a 21-year-old ski lift operator at Sierra-at-Tahoe and firefighter when he died while fighting the Sierra Fire in August 2015.

The California State Senate and Assembly has since passed a resolution designating the portion of U.S. 50 from Mount Ralston Road to Echo Summit as the Firefighter Michael "Mikey" Hallenbeck Memorial Highway. The resolution was introduced by state Sen. Ted Gaines in 2016.

Now the Hallenbeck family hopes to raise $9,000 toward memorial signs for the stretch of highway. To contribute to the production and installation of the signs, the nonprofit Tahoe Fund is collecting donations for the family.

All donations are tax deductible. Go to http://www.tahoefund.org to make a donation. After choosing "Donate Now," select "I would like to make a donation to a project" in the drop down list, then select "Mikey Hallenbeck Memorial."

"This Memorial honors Mikey's ultimate sacrifice defending the communities around Lake Tahoe Basin and surrounding areas," Toni Hallenbeck, Mikey's mother, said in a press release. "We are saddened his life ended so soon, however, so proud he chose to serve in protecting the land he enjoyed so much."