Firefighter‚ Engine 285
Born: March 21‚ 1956
Dates of Service: May 1‚ 1982 – September 11‚ 2001
Wife: Joan York
Children: Raymond-23‚ Kristina-14‚ Kristen-15‚ Robert-12‚ and Michael-9
Raymond York went at life full-tilt. He spent nearly two decades fighting blazes and loving the New York City Fire Department when an injury forced him into light duty. But for Ray‚ duty was never light‚ not as a husband‚ not as a father and not as a firefighter.
On September 11th‚ he was assigned to the Fire Zone at Rockefeller Center‚ where he had found his second-calling teaching children about fire safety. There he was ‘Fireman Ray’ to the kids he captivated. When the attack occurred‚ Firefighter York grabbed his gear‚ hitched a ride from a television crew and headed downtown. When traffic held them up‚ he caught a ride from a passing ambulance and reached the Fire Department’s command post at the World Trade Center. The same dedication he displayed on that day was evident in all areas of his life.
His passions included kayak trips with his fellow firefighters‚ whom he dubbed ‘The Blazing Paddles.’ However‚ his greatest passion was his children‚ Kristina‚ Kristen‚ Robby‚ and Michael‚ and his wife‚ Joan. He was a devoted husband and a dedicated father. He was the little league coach‚ Cub Scout leader. When it came to his children he was there for everything.
In the words of his 9-year old son Michael‚ ‘He was a lifesaver. He was a good firefighter. He was a good man. His friends liked him. He used to go everywhere I did. He was good at pool‚ swimming and baseball. He was good at everything. He was the best person in the world’
– Joan York