National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Roll of Honor

Age: 31
Year of Death: 2001

Eugene M. Whelan

Eugene was the ninth of ten children. He was determined to be a firefighter from the time he was 10 years old. He accomplished his dream in October of 1995 and loved every minute he spent on the job. His captain once said that Eugene was the king of fun but when the alarm sounded he was the consummate professional.

So typical of many firefighters‚ Eugene loved life and loved people‚ especially children. He would spend hours with his nieces and nephews at family gatherings. And at the station house‚ kids from the neighborhood would bring their bicycles to him for repair.

With his family and friends he was called The Hugger. If you put your hand out to shake his he would bypass that and give you a bear hug.

Eugene’s big heart brought him to the twin towers and that’s where he died serving others.

– Alfred Whelan

Memorial Posts


Memorial Wall

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  1. I attended FDIC 2015, I registered for the stair climb and received this gentlemen on a card to carry with me. I did it for him and all the other brothers and sisters! Was a very powerful and painful experience! I wouldn’t have changed a minute of it! Rest In Peace! Fallen but never forgotten!

    -Christy Rae Richards
    Indianapolis, Indiana

    – Christy Richards
  2. I attended the Red Rocks Stair Climb 2015 in Morrison, Colorado where I was given his card to carry. What an unbelievable experience. I did it for him and all the others that lost lives. Many of our local fireman did it in full gear and masks at the mile high city. Rest in Peace Eugene Whelan!

    – Carol Hertel
  3. I received Eugene’s name while doing the memorial stair climb in Lambeau Field today. I was honored to endure the pain of the day for his memory. As I was cleaning up at home afterward I was overcome with emotion thinking of this Hero’s sacrifice. Thank you Eugene. Rest in peace brother. We will take it from here.

    – Thomas Polomis
  4. Climbing McAllen Stair climb for Eugene Whelan… An abosolute honor!!

    – Maritza Lara
  5. We’re from Corpus Christi, TX this man was on his bib for the race. My 9 yr old son ran our Patriot 5K Run Walk and Remember in his honor. His sacrifice and life will never be forgotten.

    – Jessie Vera
  6. Its 9/11, 2016, and my thoughts and prayers go out to the victims of that date in 2001, tears well in my eyes, with a special tribute to my namesake, and a hero I never knew…

    Paul Whelan
    London, UK

    – Paul Whelan
  7. I climbed 78 stairs in honor of you!

    – Sydney Tappy
  8. I climbed stairs in remembrance of what you did for our country
    -never forget

    – Owen ward
  9. I climbed 78 flights of stairs to honor you at Bay View middle school-2016-Never Forget

    – Mikayla peters
  10. I climbed in your remeberence at Bay View Middle School 2016

    – Leslie Vega
  11. I just climbed in Eugene’s name. Never forget.

    – Jonathan
  12. I just climbed in Eugene’s name. Never forget

    – Jonathan
  13. Today I climbed 78 flights of stairs in your honor! (9-13/16) – Never Forget

    – Lily Kolz
  14. I climbed steps in Eugene’s name at bay view middle school 2016. Never forget

    – Chloe
  15. I climbed for Eugene in the New Orleans stair climb! I will Never Forget!

    – Trey Jackson
  16. Went to Mass in memory of you to day.
    Jackie Stankus

    – Jackie Stankus
  17. My high school best friend! 🙁

    – BJ Santiago
  18. Today I was honored to climb for you. I participated in the Lambeau Field Memorial Stair Climb in Green Bay, WI. I rang that bell for you. I have shed tears on and off all day thinking of the sacrifice you made. I am so humbled. I say thank you to your family for raising a hero.
    Gone, but never forgotten. ❤️

    – Theresa Janssen
  19. For all those who lost their lives on 9/11, it was my great pleasure and honor to climb in memory of Eugene. Your heroic efforts will never be forgotten. Climb on!!

    – Nichole Hocking
  20. Eugene I had the honor of climbing the stairs of Lambeau Field in your memory today. When I reached the bell I spoke your name so it will never be forgotten. Thank you for you’re service, courage and strength. With your picture on my bunkers we made it to the 110th floor! Rest In Peace brother we will take it from here.

    – Kent Brown
  21. In memory of all those who lost their lives on 9/11, it was my great pleasure and honor to climb for Eugene at the 2017 Lambeau Stair climb. Your heroic efforts will never be forgotten. Climb on!!

    – Nichole Hocking
  22. On 9/7/2018 on MCAS Iwakuni, I did the stair climb in honor of 9/11. I was given Eugene Whelan’s card, and I took him with me all 110 flights of stairs. Holding that card and seeing the face of a man who gave everything to run into that building gave me the motivation to finish those stairs. His sacrifice will never be forgotten!

    – Tatum Simpson
  23. Today I had the honor of carrying Eugene’s photo with me as I climbed the six-story training tower on Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni. I climbed it 19 times to mimic the actual height of one of the towers, and grew more grateful for his sacrifice with each round. Thank you for what you did in the name of saving others.

    – Kristi Stolzenberg
  24. Visited the Memorial and saw the white rose placed on his name for his birthday. May he never be forgotten and always remembered for his brave action. God bless his family.

    – Leah Montgomery
  25. I am honored to wear a commemorative bracelet for Eugene.

    – Martha Morrison
  26. Today I did the stair climb with my son’s fire station in honor Eugene.
    Shoshone District 1 in Wallace Idaho.
    Never forget.

    – Brynn Rotchford
  27. RIP Good Sir. You didn’t know me but I knew you

    – Raymond Barry
  28. I attended FDIC 2021. I participated in the most challenging yet reward stair climb I have ever had the honor of doing. I received Eugene’s picture to carry around as we assessed and descended those 110 flights of stairs. There were times I wanted to give up but I looked at Eugene’s picture for motivation. I hope his family sees this and know his memory still lives on with us firefighters. Eugene “the hugger” will forever be in my memory. Thank you for your bravery. Never forgotten

    – Kim Lopez
  29. My name is Lori from Wisconsin and I had the honor to walk in your name in the Tunnel to Tower on 9/11/2021. Thank you for all you did 20 years ago.

    – Lori
  30. I am a student researching the tragic events of 9/11. I never knew him, I never will. And yet, I know he will stick with me for his kind spirit, heroic end, and undying loyalty for likely the rest of my days. His family seems wonderful, and I wish them love and peace.

    – Mikayla Cappucci
  31. I sat on the bench in Long Beach with Eugenes name on it. I had to google to see who this amazing man was that gave his life on 9/11. May God bless him and I thank him for his service!

    – Danielle
  32. 2022 Lambeau Field stair climb – did it with you in my heart and prayers. Rest in peace fallen angel!

    – Misty
  33. I attended the 9/11 memorial stair climb at Lambeau Field in Green Bay a few days ago and carried your card with me. I climbed those stairs honoring you and all those who sacrificed and lost their lives that day. It was an honor and one I will continue to do every year.

    – Kelli
  34. I attended elementary school with Eugene. I will always remember his smile. Prayers to his family.

    – Fran (Downey) Peed