Thomas Christopher Brick

Thomas Christopher Brick

Submitted by his family

F.F. Thomas Brick‚ a proud member of L-36/E-95‚ Inwood‚ NY‚ was killed in the line of duty on December 16‚ 2003. Tommy was sworn in on December 31‚ 2001‚ and a member of the first post-9/11 class. He achieved his life-long ambition to become an NYC firefighter. Assigned to L-36 immediately upon graduation‚ he proudly served there until his death battling a four-alarm fire in the Inwood section of Upper Manhattan. Tommy was as enthusiastic about life as he was about being a firefighter. That was his way.

He was a devoted and loving father to his two children‚ Madeline and Aden‚ and a dear and caring friend to Meredith Esselman. Tommy was the cherished and loving son of Margaret (Rooney) and Thomas Brick‚ and loyal and loving brother of Megan Assimacopoulos and Christopher Brick. He was a very special uncle to John and Jaclyn Assimacopoulos. The Thomas C. Brick Memorial Fund was established in February 2004 to provide an endowed scholarship at Holy Cross High School‚ Flushing‚ NY‚ in his name. Tommy was a graduate of Nassau Community College and furthered his education in hotel service at the NY Institute of Technology in Old Brookville‚ NY. He was presented with the Thomas Elsasser Medal for bravery in June 2003 by the Honorable Michael R. Bloomberg. Tommy Brick was the 1127th member of FDNY to make the ultimate sacrifice.

Ronald W. Fitzpatrick

Ronald W. Fitzpatrick

Submitted by his children – Stephen‚ Kathleen‚ Eileen‚ Kevin and Mary

Ronald W. Fitzpatrick was a 68-year old father‚ grandfather and firefighter who collapsed and died while fighting a structure fire in Long Branch.

His days started as it did for most men of his generation and education. A college graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting‚ a second Lieutenant with the US Army ROTC‚ and a promising career with the IRS. He obtained all of this by the age of 24. But none of these accomplishments could quell his childhood dream of becoming a firefighter. In 1959‚ Ronald exchanged his white collar for a firefighter’s blue collar by joining the Newark Fire Department. Thus began his long‚ distinguished career. His career could be summed-up in the famous quote of Charles Dickens‚ ‘It was the best of times‚ it was the worst of times.’

Ronald was among a unique breed of men. Those times would bring the Newark Fire Department of the forefront of firefighting. These men faced an onslaught of fires and events unprecendented in the city’s history. Ronald became a Fire Captain in 1970 and was known to many as Captain Fitz. His years of experience with the Newark Fire Department lead him to a position as an instructor with the Monmouth County Fire Academy and Training Officer with the Long Branch Fire Department.

There wasn’t a fire call our father would miss; to the point where we would sometimes go along for the ride to watch him in action. Firefighting was a big part of our lives. Our brothers followed in his footsteps; Steven became a paid firefighter while Kevin became active as a volunteer for the Department.

Ronald obtained the rank as Senior Instructor with the Monmouth County Fire Academy. A position he held up until his death. During his 32 years of training‚ Captain Fitz would share his knowledge and expertise with rookie and veteran firefighters. His aggressive teaching‚ along with other academy instructors‚ certified more firefighters from all over the state‚ making Monmouth County the top Academy in New Jersey. His commitment to the safety and well-being of others was a priority. He remained a mentor to generations of firefighters.

On December 6‚ 2003‚ Ronald answered his final alarm. Being dedicated to the fire service and his love for the profession his legacy will continue on in all the firefighters’ lives he has touched.

Jesse D. James

Jesse D. James

Submitted by his grandmother

Jesse James was 22 years old and died August 24th‚ 2003. He was on his way home from fighting wildfires in Boise‚ Idaho. Seven of his crew passed away with Jesse.

Jesse went to work for First Strike Environmental the summer of 2001. He was so happy when he passed all the requirements to be a wildland firefighter. He loved his job and had his gear packed and ready to go at a moment’s notice. In April of 2003 he went to Texas with many other crews to be a part of the Columbia Space Shuttle Recovery.

Jesse enjoyed the outdoors‚ camping‚ fishing‚ skateboarding and the guitar‚ but the light of his life was hid 3-year-old son‚ Kolby. He loved taking him to the park‚ teaching him to skateboard‚ play cars‚ or just spending quite time with him. Jesse’s friends can tell you‚ he spent a lot of time bragging about his son and how much he loved him.

Although Kolby is very young‚ he knows his Daddy is in heaven and he will see him again someday. He talks to him on the phone and asks him if he is having fun skateboarding in heaven. On Halloween Kolby dressed like a wildland firefighter‚ he was so cute!

Kolby’s mother‚ Sue and Jesse were no longer together‚ but maintained a good relationship. Just weeks before Jesse died‚ he and his girlfriend‚ Sonja went with Kolby‚ Sue and her boyfriend Brad‚ to the Douglas County Fair. They also all went to the Monster Truck Races.

Jesse was a loving father‚ son‚ and grandson. He is survived by his son‚ Kolby James‚ and Kolby’s mother Sue Hammond‚ and his mother‚ Laura James‚ all of Roseburg‚ Oregon. He also leaves his father Brian James and his wife Kay‚ of Medford‚ Oregon. Jesse’s Grandparents are Francis Berry of Klamath Falls and George and Donna Tarrant of Roseburg‚ who raised Jesse from the age of four‚ girlfirend Sonja Collins and many aunts‚ uncles‚ cousins and friends.

We will all truly miss Jesse in our lives.

Matthew K. Brimer

Matthew K. Brimer

Submitted by his parents

Matt Brimer‚ age 18‚ was a volunteer firefighter on Engine 23. He was taking paramedic training and had his own lawn care business‚ too. He served as a volunteer firefighter outside his residential area because he strongly desired to help others. Even as a little boy‚ he wanted to be a firefighter. He died on November 8‚ 2003‚ in a private vehicle accident in route to an emergency call. Fire Chief William Smith permanently retired Matt’s radio call number. Matt was voted Firefighter of the Year for 2003. He will be sadly missed‚ but his memory lives on.

Matt is survived by his parents‚ Kathy and Karl Brimer and two sisters‚ Marissa and Heather Brimer. Also‚ he is survived by his grandparents‚ Duke and Jean Brimer‚ and Miriam Third and the late Gene Third‚ and several aunts‚ uncles‚ and cousins.

He was a 2003 graduate of Jacksonville Christian Academy where he enjoyed playing football for 6 years. He was awarded the Christian Service Award two years in a row. Matt loved to spend time working around the school. He enjoyed fishing and playing the guitar. He was a fun-loving young man who endeared himself to strangers and sometimes aggravated family and friends with practical jokes. Whatever he did‚ he did it with a smile!

Matt was an active member of his church. He had participated in several mission trips to Oklahoma to work on church buildings. Also‚ he enjoyed doing community service projects such as visiting local schools for fire safety programs.

The Matthew K. Brimer Memorial Scholarship has been established at Jacksonville Christian Academy. The award is given to one senior each year. The award is based on character and community service‚ both of which Matt strongly believed to be important. This scholarship is a fitting tribute to a young man who gave his life doing what he genuinely loved to do.

Charles Flowers Sr.

Submitted by his wife

Charles Flowers Sr. was a veteran firefighter of 26 years with the New Caney Volunteer Fire Department. He held every position within the department during his tenure; at the time of his death he was the Assistant Chief. His devotion to the fire department was beyond the ordinary. There’s a story of him going with the Chief to look at a Tanker on his anniversary. He also gave up his beard to raise money for the fire department on several occasions.

Charlie‚ as he was known to almost everyone‚ had an interest in seeing the younger volunteers make something of themselves by furthering their education in the fire service. He was the first one to donate money himself‚ get on the phone‚ and/or go out in person and ask for money from businesses/citizens in order to pay fees for classes.

When not involved with the fire department‚ Charlie’s favorite pastime was watching NASCAR races on television. He had the honor of working on the fire/rescue squad at the inaugural race in Fort Worth‚ Texas.

Charles Flowers Sr.‚ 61‚ passed away after suffering a heart attack on scene of a motor vehicle accident. He spent four weeks in the hospital where he survived many set-backs. He was released for home recovery on December 17th to spend Christmas with his family and friends. Charles passed away in his sleep on December 29‚ 2003. He is survived by his wife Betty of 37 years; son and daughter-in-law‚ Charles Jr. and Angelique; daughter and son-in-law‚ Gay and Ed James; daughter‚ Benita Flowers; brother and sister-in-law‚ John and Mildred Flowers; four grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Kenneth J. Jeffery

Kenneth J. Jeffery

There is no profile listed for this fallen firefighter.

Mark L. Edwards

Mark L. Edwards

Submitted by his wife

When I think about my guy‚ my husband‚ my volunteer firefighter the first thing that comes into my mind is pride. I am talking about how still today when I talk about Mark to people who didn’t know him‚ I hear comments like ‘I can tell he was a wonderful person just by the way you speak about him.’ or ‘He must have been a great guy‚ taking care of his family and still finding the time to support his local Fire Department.’ I simply tell them that it’s true.

When we moved our family to the Gower area we met a local merchant and were quickly told about the volunteer firefighters. Immediately Mark knew he wanted to be apart of the department. He joined in November of 1996 and spent almost every weekend for two years completing various firefighter classes. He received certificates in Plane Crash‚ Auto Rescue‚ Pump Operations‚ and Hazardous Materials for First Responders‚ Firefighter Safety and Survival: The Company Officer’s Responsibility‚ Introduction to the Fire Service‚ Introduction to Clandestine Drug Labs‚ First Responder Continuing Education‚ and Incident Management System. Mark also served one year as Assistant Fire Chief.

Mark was the kind of person who didn’t always have to be first or make a big impression. He was kind‚ caring and helpful to everyone. He treated people how he wanted to be treated. Mark loved being a part of the team. He cared for each one of his fellow firefighters and held them in high esteem.

Together we raised our children and in each of them I see a part of their dad. Mark’s oldest son Mark Aaron shares his entrepreneurial nature. Our son Brandon Lee shares his unquenchable love for the outdoors‚ hunting and fishing. Our youngest son Justin Scott not only looks the most like his dad with his dark hair and big brown eyes‚ but has the same sweet spirit.

Today the kids and I enjoy the friendship of the firefighters and they continue to be a part of our lives. Mark will always have a place in all our hearts and will be dearly missed.

In the last words Mark spoke to me‚ ‘See Ya Later Babe’

In Your Loving Memory‚Karla

Willard B. Paul

There is no profile listed for this fallen firefighter.

Theodore E. Waliczek

Theodore E. Waliczek

Submitted by his wife

Teddy was a loving husband and father‚ a proud and respected firefighter‚ a fun-loving brother. He was a gourmet cook at home and at the firehouse‚ a Little League enthusiast‚ a staunch union supporter‚ and an avid fisherman. He was the heart of our family.

Our three children‚ Eddy‚ Edie‚ and Fran‚ and myself were very lucky to have Teddy for twenty-three years. We were his number on priority; he was my best friend. We are very proud that he was a Fire Fighter. He taught us life by his outstanding courage and unending energy. He did everything he could to make us comfortable and secure. Our son‚ Eddy‚ followed in Teddy’s footsteps. He is a Lieutenant on the Chicago Fire Department serving in the same area in which his dad served.

The last company Teddy was assigned to was Truck 54. It is located a half-block from where we held our wedding reception in 1959. His first company was Squad 8‚ then Snorkel Squad 2. His co-workers tell me he was a ‘good man‚’ always ready‚ always in the thick of the action.

His two brothers were also Chicago Fire Fighters. His oldest brother‚ LeRoy‚ was a Lieutenant and ‘Lefty’ was an Engineer; Teddy’s sister was ‘Boots.’ When Teddy started at the CFD‚ LeRoy was also assigned to Squad 8. He enjoyed the company of his brothers and sister very much‚ and we shared fun-filled holidays and vacations with them.

Teddy was well known in our church and community. The Clear-Ridge Little League posthumously honored Teddy for his fundraising and coaching efforts for the League. For the Cub Scouts‚ he initiated a system of cooking for their spaghetti dinner fundraiser that is still used thirty years later. He was the candy chairman for Brownies and cookie chairman for the Girl Scouts.

We miss him; Teddy is always in our hearts and will never be forgotten.