Captain George Roque is a hero. There is no question about it. It doesn’t take an act of extreme heroism to be labeled such, just the wiliness to sacrifice one’s self for another. On January 1, 2021, Captain Roque made that ultimate sacrifice during his service to the people of the City of Los Angeles, passing away due to complications of the Covid-19 Virus. George Roque was more than just a LAFD Captain; he was a husband, a father, and a friend to many. A member since 1998, George served the LAFD with honor and integrity for 22 years. Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas was quoted writing of George, “He was an exemplary leader who displayed a strong work ethic, led by example, and had a tremendous amount of pride for the community and the station.” These words capture the essence of his leadership qualities and his love of the job.
George was raised in a very disciplined household that was still filled with love. He was one of 4 boys, being the second to the youngest. His parents, Alfredo and Rachael Roque taught the boys that life was all about working hard and remaining strong as a family. Growing up, the family enjoyed camping trips, fishing, hunting, and most of all—Family gatherings. George wanted to raise his own family exactly as he was raised and he did so with pride.
George met his wife Hope as a sophomore in high school. They married quite young and began their family at the ages of 17 and 16. As a young family, they faced many hardships and struggles, but that never stopped George’s determination to set and accomplish his life goals.
Throughout his career path George always set high expectations for himself and never settled. He was always searching for ways to advance. These skills would later be his keys to success and he would instill this sentiment in his 4 children and extended family. There was never a time where someone would have a conversation with George and words of wisdom or a great story wouldn’t be shared. At home, George would reinforce his values with his kids through tough love and discipline. George would always say to his wife, Hope, “We have to teach these kids.”
While working to advance, George’s goal was always to be hired on with LAFD. After 15 years in the fire service George finally received the call he had been waiting for, he was chosen to attend the academy for Los Angeles City Fire Department. Unfortunately, within that same week, he lost his loving mother unexpectedly. This meant George would have to start the academy a few days after losing his mother, and be forced to grieve alone, away from his family and father. This was a true testament of how strong-willed George was.
During the academy and while promoting George was known for his relentless studying. He did not attend an event or family function without having a study binder, books, or flash cards to review. His family would often find him in front of a mirror rehearsing for his upcoming drill presentations and interviews. This commitment showed how truly driven and dedicated George was to succeed.
As hard as George worked, he always managed to enjoy life. George enjoyed his “Friday Rounds” with his sons, playing in the yard with his kids and grandkids, working on his 4 acres of orange groves, and planning the next family trip to his Lake Havasu home. George planned these trips with his four children and their families in mind, yet somehow these trips always grew to include so many more!
Those family trips are now known as some of the best memories his loved ones will have to share for a lifetime. These memories remind us all, what life is all about—remaining strong together.
George is survived by his Wife Hope of forty years, four children, ages 13 to 39. Each of them proud to carry the same family values and strength their Father has shown.
George Jr, 39, is a foreman electrician, married with the three children. He shares his dad’s love for hunting and looks forward to future trips with his little brother.
Sarah, 37, is a Registered Nurse, married with 3 children. She enjoys family trips to Lake Havasu and plans to continue the same love and traditions in her dad’s memory.
Tonie, 32, is also a Registered Nurse, engaged with 2 children. Her selflessness and dedication to family is nothing less than George’s own.
Ortega, 13, looked forward to his dad’s days off. They were inseparable. They would work long days completing home projects and working on the 4 acres of orange groves. Ortega is a strong young man, hardworking, and responsible. He has dreams of becoming a Firefighter, following in his Father’s footsteps.
George’s commitment to teaching his children hard work, strong morals, and the importance of family will carry on through the Roque generation.
To the world he was a dad and husband, to his wife and four kids, he was their entire world. George will now be spending his eternal life with his loving parents, Alfredo and Rachael Roque and his beloved niece, Audrey in Heaven. We love you, and until we meet again….