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Woodside firefighters honored at City Hall for life-saving rescue in Sunnyside

By Bill Parry

A dozen Woodside-based firefighters and EMTs were honored for their heroics at City Hall Tuesday. City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer (D-Sunnysid) presented a proclamation to Ladder Company 163 and EMS Station 45 & 46 for their lifesaving work during a fire in Sunnyside in October.

“Ladder Company 163 and EMS Station 45 & 46 are truly New York’s Bravest,” Van Bramer said. “Instead of fleeing from danger, they run in head first. I’m proud to honor this Woodside-based team for their heroism and lifesaving efforts.”

On Oct. 7, Ladder Company 163 and EMS Station 45 & 46 responded to a 911 call in Sunnyside at 4:51 a.m., and found three people trapped in a burning building at 42-15 43rd Ave. Firefighters Sean Cosgrove and Michael Paglino quickly went to work rescuing an adult and a child, who told them there was one more person trapped inside. The firefighters pushed past the flames to find Claudia Hernandez facedown and unconscious.

The two firefighters carried Hernandez into the hallway to Capt. Tomas Regan, who immediately began lifesaving CPR. Once outside, FDNY EMS Members from Station 45 & 46 initiated advanced medical care and took Hernandez to the hospital.

Hernandez is an accomplished marathon runner and while she was unable to compete in the 2016 New York City Marathon due to her recovery, she will run in 2017. When she competes next year, she plans on wearing a shirt emblazoned with the names of the team of first responders who saved her life.

After the City Hall ceremony, Van Bramer tweeted, “Running into a burning building is not something that most of us will never do — knowing that NYC’s Bravest are willing and ready to risk their lives makes me feel safe.”

Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparry@cnglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4538.

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