On Tuesday, Sept. 24, thirteen children of firefighters who died at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, and six whose fathers died of illnesses related to 9/11, graduated from the FDNY Fire Academy during an emotional ceremony.
“Many of their fathers were killed on September 11, several others died of World Trade Center illnesses, and others lost their lives in the course of their duty, bravely working to save and protect others,” said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro, who presided over the ceremony.
“Today, these 21 legacies are no longer children dreaming of their careers their fathers loved, and of serving in the world’s greatest fire department — today, they have fully achieved their dreams.”
FDNY Probationary Firefighter Leonard Ragaglia Jr., who graduated from the Fire Academy alongside his brother, Probationary Firefighter Anthony Ragaglia said he always wanted to follow in his fathers footsteps.
“I’ve always wanted to be a Firefighter. I’ve always wanted to be like my dad and follow in his footsteps. I always hung around the firehouse as a kid and put his gear on. This is a dream come true,”
The Ragaglia siblings are following in the footsteps of their father, Firefighter Leonard Ragaglia, Engine 54, who made the Supreme Sacrifice on September 11, 2001.
Probationary Firefighter Leonard Ragaglia Jr. says, “As the years went on, joining FDNY became something that I wanted to do more and more. I’m ready for this. It means so much, words can’t describe it.”
The 19 firefighters joined another 282 probationary firefighters who graduated from the FDNY Fire Academy.
All of the probationary firefighters will now be assigned to firehouses throughout New York City.
Source/Photos: FDNY Facebook