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In Memory Of Gregory
Hillcrest Fire dep.
assigned to:
Squad 41 Fire Co.

On Sept.11th:
Our lives were sadly changed:
As a fireman you responded:
But now our lives are not the same:
You lost your life so suddenly:
When duty called to you:
But we know you didn’t die in vain:
It was a job you loved to do.
You touched the lives of everyone:
That was so close to you:
Your loving wife:
Your mom and dad:
Your precious little son:
He will be so proud of you:
When he learns of what you’ve done:

Your comrades that you worked with:
Will carry on your dream:
Of restoring that Mack fire truck:
That will full fill your deepest dream.
When a fire call comes in:
Squad 41 will heed:
But their friend and fellow brother:
Won’t be with them as they leave.
Our lives are sadly changed now:
But we’re very proud of you:
For the lives you tried to save that day:
You’re a Hero through and through:

Written By Diane Huggins
Email Diane

Diane Huggins Poem page

Firefighter's dream lives on

When New York City firefighter Greg Sikorsky died Sept. 11 at the World Trade Center, he left behind a unique legacy.

In addition to his wife Marie, 3-year-old son Steven, and a lifetime of memories with family, friends and colleagues, the 34-year-old Sikorsky left unfinished his dream to restore a 1939 Mack fire truck.

Now members of the Hillcrest Fire Department, where Sikor-sky volunteered for 16 years, have taken up the gauntlet to restore the antique pumper as a memorial to all the victims of the disaster.

A team of about 50 Rockland firefighters, members of Kearsing Edwards American Legion Post 1600 and 20 local businesses under the direction of chief mechanic Joe McNamara, have a dream of their own — to restore the firetruck in time for New York City's St. Patrick's Day Parade.

McNamara, a family friend and chief mechanic for the Rockland County Highway Department, spoke of the group's motivation to fulfill Sikorsky's dream.

"Firemen, whether paid or volunteer, are the greatest people going," McNamara said. "When we run away from fires, they run toward them."

The Mack fire truck originally was made for the Cedar Grove, N.J., Fire Department. Sikorsky, who bought it several years ago upstate, had an interest in antique cars and had gained experience from working at Sikorsky Texaco, his father's auto-repair business, along with his brothers, Perry, 32, and George Jr., 40.

Sikorsky spent hours of his spare time working on the truck, now being housed at the Hillcrest Fire Department's Ladentown substation.

This was no ordinary cosmetic job, team members said. Sikor-sky's restoration — which they estimated would cost $50,000 to $75,000 — included dismantling and repairing every part of the vehicle. In essence, they said, his plan was to rebuild it from the ground up and enter it in parades.

"Greg was a perfectionist," said his father, George Sikorsky Sr. "On Sept. 9, only two days before the World Trade Center attack, he painted the frame."

Greg Sikorsky, a former Marine, licensed pilot, skydiver and scuba enthusiast, had been stationed at Manhattan Engine Co. 47 in 1997. He was assigned to Squad 41 Rescue Co. in the Bronx when he responded to a search and rescue call Sept. 11 at the World Trade Center.

"I was with Greg at Joe's house on Sept. 10, talking about the truck," said Gary Wren, a Hillcrest fire commissioner and brother of Gordon Wren Jr., director of the county's emergency services and another Hillcrest volunteer. "Every fire company in the county is a family, and Greg was a part of our family."

Among the donations — a restored gas tank, new tires in an unusual size and paint that costs $400 a gallon.

McNamara remains optimistic about achieving the team's goals, in spite of the challenge of turning a truck frame with wheels into a fully functioning vehicle in 11 weeks.

"If we get the body parts back, we can put it together in three weeks," he said.

Those wishing to contribute to the Greg Sikorsky Antique Firetruck Fund may send their donations to Sikorsky Auto Repair Inc., 475 Route 306, Monsey, NY 10952 or the Hillcrest Fire Company, c/o Gordon Wren Jr., 7 Elliott Place, Spring Valley, NY 10977. For more information, call 354-7788.

SIKORSKY-Gregory R. Of Wesley Hills, New York, lost his life on September 11th, 2001 while heroically saving others in the World Trade Center.

Greg was born on October 5, 1966 to George and Luzia Sikorsky in Manhattan, New York. Greg graduated East Ramapo High School in 1985 and worked as a mechanic in his family's business.

In 1996 Greg joined the FDNY and was assigned to Engine 46 in the Bronx. Prior to transferring to Squad 41 last year, he was also stationed in Engine 47 and 50 Truck. He was a volunteer with Hillcrest Fire Department for sixteen years.

Greg also served in the Marine Corp. Reserves and was a veteran of the Persian Gulf War.

Greg is survived by his wife Marie, their son Steven, 3 years old. His parents George and Luzia Sikorsky. Three brothers Perry and his wife Maria, George and his wife Barbara and Kenny. Nephew Danny and niece Kasey & several aunts, uncles and cousins.

Greg also leaves behind Marie's parents, mother Margaret Topkin and father George Topkin, her eight sisters and their families including seventeen nieces and nephews.

Greg was a devoted son, a loving husband, a proud father, a wonderful brother, a special uncle and a dedicated firefighter. He had a unique way of touching the lives of everyone who knew him. He was a true friend to all and will be deeply missed but forever remembered.

A Memorial Mass held on Saturday, Oct. 20, 2001 at 10 AM from St. Boniface R.C. Church, 5 Willow Tree Road, Wesley Hills, NY. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Squad 41 Family Hero Fund, 330 East 150th Street, Bronx, New York 10541.


There was the time that Gregory R. Sikorsky decided to take his youngest brother, Perry, up in a four-seater Cessna. But after they got up at 6 a.m., after they had driven an hour to the airport, the plane's battery turned out to be dead. So he drove his truck onto the highway and jump-started the plane. Then they took off.

Below them was Spring Valley, N.Y., where they and two other brothers had grown up, where their parents lived, where Gregory Sikorsky, 34, was raising a 3-year- old son with his wife, Marie.

"I've never seen Rockland County from the air before," his brother said. "He showed me our parent's house and the garage. He even let me fly the plane. It really was amazing."

Gregory Sikorsky. Licensed pilot. Firefighter with Squad 41 in the South Bronx. Ex-Marine. Harley Davidson rider. Skydiver. Skier. Automobile mechanic. Licensed tractor-trailer driver.

He took his youngest brother with him on many of his adventures, sometimes for company, sometimes for competition. After Firefighter Sikorsky finished a year at auto- body school in Colorado, the two drove back to New York together in a Chevy Blazer.

They took their first skydiving trip together. And they recently rode in a Harley Davidson rally from New York to a drive-in diner in New Jersey.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 8, 2001.

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Special thanks to Diane Higgins who made a wonderfull poem