Prescott Strong

Jordin Sparks, Jon Voight Honor Firefighters and Arizona Families at “Prescott Strong” Fundraiser


Despite a torrential downpour, thousands turned up for “Prescott Strong,” an afternoon of live music on Prescott, Arizona’s historic “Whisky Row,” lined for the day with food booths, T-shirt sellers, a silent auction, and more. The July 21 event benefited victims of the devastating fire that swept through nearby Yarnell June 30, destroying homes and killing 19 firefighters.

As for me, I happened to be en route to Sedona, Arizona, with a longtime friend, KQNA radio show host Janis Best. So we made a point of stopping by to honor the brave firefighters of Prescott, known as the Granite Mountain Hotshots. (Best’s show, AZ Girlfriend, features beauty, health and fashion tips, along with interviews with experts in these fields.)

Sanford Cohen, owner of KQNA Radio, an event sponsor, emceed the day’s festivities.

Given the heartfelt concern for the fire victims, musical talents descended on Prescott in force to participate. Among others were Jordin Sparks, an  “American Idol” winner and star of the movie, “Sparkle;” and Drew Ryniewicz, an “X-Factor” competitor.”

Oscar-winner Jon Voight also flew to Arizona to acknowledge the Prescott firefighters. Voight plays the prison-parolee, bad guy dad on Showtime’s new series, “Ray Donovan,” which I continue to watch, despite there being not one sympathetic character on the show, Voight included.


As Sparks stepped onto the bandstand, organizers brought out the American flag.  “I am so happy to be here, she said,” before giving a shout-out to all those who came to show their support. “This is absolutely incredible.”

Looking sharp in the day’s signature T-shirt, which listed all the names of the fallen firefighters, Sparks asked for the audience to put their hands on their hearts. She then sang the national anthem, followed by a stirring rendition of “Amazing Grace,” in honor she said of America and the fallen firefighters.

Here’s her tweet, which included her picture beside the T-shirts: @JordanSparks About to remember & honor the #Yarnell19 #PrescottStrong


Top photo: Jordin Sparks shows off her Prescott Strong T-shirt, which lists the names of the fallen firefighters (photo, from Jordin Sparks’ Facebook page, originally from Timeline Photos)

Second photo: Jon Voight, left, at the Prescott Strong fundraiser with emcee Sanford Cohen of event sponsor KQNA (photo, originally from the KQNA Facebook page

Third photo: Prescott Strong featured a day of live music, shown on a big screen for the thousands who couldn’t get close to the bandstand.



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Prescott Strong

Published July 22, 2013 – Ellen Olivier, Society News LA