FDNY honors battalion chief who died of 9/11-related cancer with plaque
FDNY Battalion Chief Robert Miuccio was among the first responders who helped recover the bodies of those who lost their lives following the terrorist attacks
By Irene Spezzamonte
Staten Island Advance, N.Y.
STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — FDNY colleagues, family members and friends honored late FDNY Battalion Chief Robert Miuccio with a commemorative plaque on Friday, keeping alive the memory of the brave man who devoted his life to saving others.
“For more than 150 years, the history of our great department has been written each and every day by the heroic work of so many brave firefighters and fire officers who have served the people of the city of New York,” said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro. “For 39 years, Robert Miuccio was a big part of that history.”
Miuccio, of Westerleigh, was an FDNY battalion chief and was among the first responders who helped recover the bodies of those who lost their lives following the Sept. 11 World Trade Center terrorist attacks.
“From the first day he was there...” said his son Robert Miuccio Jr. “Today is a celebration, but the rest of the week was sad.”
Exactly one year ago, Miuccio, 76, lost his battle with 9/11-related lung cancer, his son said, while the memories he shared with his dad crossed his mind and forced a timid and melancholic smile.
Miuccio decided to put his gear on and board the Staten Island Ferry on the tragic day two hijacked planes hit the Twin Towers in lower Manhattan, knowing his brother was likely among the victims.
His brother Richard, 55, was working on the 86 floor of the South Tower and died that day.
Grief didn’t stop Miuccio from helping others. He worked at the site for more than three years.
His bravery will always be remembered with a plaque in Miuccio’s name at FDNY Ladder 79 in West Brighton, which reads “to Battalion Chief Robert Miuccio who bravely served this department protecting life and property in the city of New York in the rescue and recovery efforts at Manhattan box 5-5-8087 World Trade Center.”
Miuccio Jr., who followed his dad’s footprints and became a firefighter himself, described his dad as “a humble man who would recognize everyone else before recognizing himself” and who did not like being in the spotlight.
Prior to being a firefighter, Miuccio joined the Air Force, where he was a radar and weapons technician while deployed in Vietnam.
“He might not be with us, but he will always be within us,” said FDNY Chaplain Rabbi Joseph Postasnik.
©2019 Staten Island Advance, N.Y.