A tip of the fire helmet to our area firefighters, who had a rough weekend trying to contain a variety of blazes.

After a cool start to the summer, it heated up in a hurry. The heat, mixed with some sparks and wind, led to the fires that, among other things, burned down a pair of apartment buildings in Pendleton on Saturday, putting dozens of people out of their homes.

Then the wind really kicked up Sunday evening, and fire crews again scrambled to respond to a dozen incidents of downed power lines, grass fires and the like.

If you think the heat has been unbearable this weekend, take a minute to consider the men and women who strap on that heavy gear and run toward the flames, sacrificing not only comfort but their own safety to protect the rest of us.

A kick in the basketball shorts to Brandon Roy, who broke Trail Blazers fans’ hearts this past week by coming out of retirement last week and signing with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Sure, it’s common in sports for a player to “retire,” then jump back into the league after a season or two. Heck, Michael Jordan did it twice.

But Portland has stuck by Roy with such a passion that the move can feel like nothing other than betrayal. And to a conference rival that finished just two games back of the Blazers last season, none the less.

Drafted sixth overall from the University of Washington, he was a three-time all-star and had a penchant for late-game heroics. He was also supposed to be part of a young team that was going to bring an NBA title back to Portland.

We know Roy couldn’t have come back to the Blazers if he’d wanted — the team used its amnesty clause after his retirement, but still had to pay him the remaining $68 million from his salary, according to The Oregonian.

It was painful to watch his career sputter out on his bad knees as he entered his late 20s, but it will even harder to watch him enter the Rose Garden wearing the opposing team’s uniform.

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