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Firefighter who rescued hundreds of 9/11 victims dies of cancer

Thomas Phelan became a firefighter two years after he helped evacuate hundreds from Manhattan as a ferry captain


By Cliff Pinckard
Advance Ohio Media

NEW YORK — A firefighter who is credited with saving hundreds of lives after the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, has died of cancer, reports say.

Thomas Phelan, 45, evacuated hundreds of people from Lower Manhattan while working as a ferry captain, according to the New York Daily News.

CNN reports Phelan died on Friday. The Daily News reports it’s believed his cancer was because of exposure to toxic fumes at Ground Zero in the days after the attack.

Phelan was a ferry captain for Circle Line Statue of Liberty ferry cruises on 9/11, then became a firefighter in 2003, according to reports.

“He brought supplies, rescue workers and was a huge part of the operation,” according to the NYC Fire Wire Facebook page.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, on Twitter, called Phelan a hero.

“We will never forget his service and his sacrifice,” de Blasio said.

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