From Rockland County. Mother emigrated from Co. Leitrim; father emigrated from
Co. Mayo. Resides in Spark Hill, Orange County.
"I've been in the department since June of 1990. I thought it would be a
good job and a chance to help others. I'm currently with the fire marshals at
the Bronx base, working on investigations."
Describe your September 11 experience
"I was off that day, and I heard on the radio what happened. I drove down
to work; everyone was ordered to report. A few hours later I went down to the
Trade Center. "I'm not sure what time I got down there; it was a few hours after
it happened. It was just a surreal scene, totally unimaginable.
"I was looking for my brother, Dennis. He was a firefighter in Ladder 13. I
tried to piece together where they last were. There were lots of firemen looking
for their companies or their trucks. I was able to locate his truck, but there
was no sign of anyone from his company.
"We didn't find Dennis that day. My mother and father are as well as can be
expected, but it's been so difficult for them. They had four boys. They're just
taking it day by day now. Dennis was married and had three children. The oldest
is just five and he had 10-month-old twins. It's so tough on his wife now.
"They found Dennis's body a few days after his memorial service on September
28. We had a small service after that for the family."
What has your job been like since?
"The fire department is trying to get back to normal. Fire marshals do the origin
and cause and investigations on fires, but now we've been working at the morgue
helping to identify the firemen. Fortunately I've been on vacation for the past
couple of weeks. It's been a help.
"I still think it's the greatest job, though. What happened was so unfortunate.
Nobody could have foreseen it."
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