After the vicious murder of 61-year-old EMS Lt. Alison Russo-Elling on Sept. 29, FDNY members placed a bunting on EMS Station 49 to honor her 25 years of service.
According to Chief James Essig, at approximately 2:10 p.m., at the corner of 20th Avenue and 41st Street, Russo-Elling was getting food nearby the EMS station she was assigned to about half a block away. At 2:15 p.m., a 34-year-old man brandished a knife and viciously attacked her, stabbing her numerous times.
She was transported to Mount Sinai Queens, where she succumbed to her injuries.
Her alleged attacker, Peter Zisopoulos, of 41st Street is facing charges of murder and criminal possession of a weapon, according to authorities.
Fire Department of New York (FDNY) Acting Commissioner Laura Kavanagh said that members of EMS serve only to help people and save lives, making this attack senseless and heartbreaking.
“To be attacked and killed in the course of helping others is both heartbreaking and enraging for our department in ways I cannot describe,” Kavanagh said. “Lieutenant Russo exemplified FDNY EMS. She was a World Trade Center first responder; she was cited multiple times for her bravery and lifesaving work. She was absolutely beloved on this job.”
Police Commissioner Keechant Sewell said that the NYPD stands with the FDNY and the entire city of New York as we mourn the death of a dedicated public servant.
“This deadly, senseless broad daylight attack on a uniformed EMT member is a direct assault on our society,” Sewell said. “It is the latest consequence of the violence that we relentlessly fight in our city.”