Monday, August 25, 2014

Fearless

James Pappageorge  drove a Mustang with a "No Fear" sticker affixed to its rear bumper.  It was no idle statement.  FF Pappageorge had been on the job for only six weeks when he was killed in the line of duty on Tuesday, September 11, 2001 at the World Trade Center.  He had responded to the World Trade Center as a member of Engine 23 in Manhattan.  

FF Pappageorge may have only spent the final six weeks of his twenty-nine years as a member of the FDNY but he had in fact spent years in the business of helping others.  He had been an EMT since 1993, working at a number of hospitals.  After he earned his EMT-B he continued to hone his skills and advance his training until he became a paramedic, working at Cornell Medical Center and Columbia Presbyterian Hospital. 

Raised by his mother, Olga, and with his sister, Helen, an NYPD Detective, FF Pappageorge was engaged to be married at the time of his death.  He and his fiance, Gina Pinos, parents to a young son, Justin, were scheduled to marry in September, 2002.  

It took almost seven months but on April 5, 2002 the Medical Examiner of the City of New York announced that FF Pappageorge's remains had been identified.  He was buried on April 13, 2002 following a funeral mass at Christ Greek Orthodox Church in Corona, Queens.  

As noted above, the Pappageorge family was a family in which public service was Job #1.  In 2008 his sister Helen, the NYPD Detective, gave birth to a son.  She is now retired from the NYPD, having given years to the service of the City she loves...

...the city that her brother James gave his life to serve and to protect. 

-AK 

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