Temecula appoints John Crater as new Fire Chief

TEMECULA, Calif. ─ Temecula Mayor James “Stew” Stewart, Temecula City Manager Aaron Adams and CAL FIRE/Riverside County Fire Chief Shawn Newman welcome John Crater as the newly appointed Division Fire Chief for the City of Temecula, effective May 11, 2020.


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Crater replaces Interim Division Chief Bill Weiser who stepped in to temporarily serve Temecula. Chief Weiser will transition with Chief Crater, and resume his post again as Division Chief for Bautista/San Jacinto.

Mayor Stewart states, “Although the COVID-19 pandemic is on everyone’s mind, we have not lost sight that fire safety and protection from wildland fires remain a critical priority for our region, and I’m pleased to announce Chief Crater brings 26 years of frontline public safety expertise to Temecula.”

With nearly 26 years of firefighting service, John Crater appointed Temecula Fire Chief. City of Temecula photo

Chief Crater started his firefighting career in November of 1994 as a Volunteer Firefighter at Station 9 Good Meadow in Riverside County. Chief Crater was hired in 1999 by CDF San Diego as a Seasonal Firefighter in Deluz. In 2001, he was hired as a Permanent Firefighter II for the Riverside Unit in the Lake Elsinore Battalion. He also worked in Battalions 2 and 13 as a Fire Apparatus Engineer.

In 2008, Crater was promoted to Fire Captain again in the Lake Elsinore Battalion and worked at Stations 11, 61, and Truck 97. In 2017, Crater accepted a promotion to Battalion Chief working in the Cities of Desert Hot Springs and Lake Elsinore.

City Manager Aaron Adams stated the decision came after careful consideration.

“This position is key for us as an organization and as a community. I am confident that Chief Crater’s leadership style and long history of experience within Southwest Riverside County will be an asset to the City of Temecula,” adds Adams.

Chief Crater and his family reside in Southwest Riverside County.

Submitted by City of Temecula

This article sponsored by:

For more information, contact Bill Tyler at Century 21 Full Realty Service.

Contact the editor: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

Trevor Montgomery, 48, moved in 2017 to the Intermountain area of Shasta County from Riverside County and runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes or has written for several other news organizations; including Riverside County based newspapers, Valley News, (the now defunct) Valley Chronicle, Anza Valley Outlook, and Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle; as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County and Mountain Echo in Shasta County.

Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back, and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident. (Click here to see segment of Discovery Channel documentary of Trevor’s accident.)

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations; including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center, and Lake Elsinore Station; along with other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.

Trevor has been married for more than 29 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and his “fluid family” includes 13 children and 16 grandchildren.

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