Thread: Chief Ray Downey-Laid to Rest
05-21-2002, 12:22 AM #1
Chief Ray Downey-Laid to Rest
Rest in peace Chief. God bless you! We shall not forget.
NEW YORK (AP) - New York's most decorated firefighter - killed
in the World Trade Center attack - was remembered Monday as an
exemplary public servant and dedicated family man at a funeral
attended by politicians, government officials and hundred of his
Chief Ray Downey, 63, was last seen Sept. 11 near the trade
center's south tower, trying to rescue firefighters trapped beneath
He led the fire department's special operations command chief
and was a nationally known expert on urban search-and-rescue
techniques. He led a team of city firefighters who responded to the
1995 Oklahoma City bombing and was one of three top fire department
officials lost in the trade center attack.
Downey received 21 citations of valor during his 40-year career.
Downey's sons, fire Capt. Joe Downey and Lt. Chuck Downey, had
spent nearly every day searching the trade center ruins before the
medical examiner's office said last week that Downey's remains had
been identified through DNA.
"We never knew his legendary status as a firefighter," Joe
Downey told Newsday. "He was a very humble man."
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Federal
Emergency Management Agency Director Joe Allbaugh attended the
funeral, at which Father Frank Gaeta said Downey should be
remembered for his love of his family.
"He didn't want to be canonized," Gaeta said. "He wanted you
to imitate his life."
Thousands of firefighters attended Downey's memorial service in
December in the Long Island town of Deer Park. President Bush
signed legislation in April to name the Deer Park Post Office after
(Copyright 7726 by The Associated PressProudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
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