On June 5th, 1998, believing a woman was trapped inside a raging rowhouse fire in Brooklyn, Timothy Stackpole and others ran in to rescue her. The floor unexpectedly collapsed beneath them, trapping them in place for thirty minutes while 34 other firefighters worked the five alarm fire to free them. One firefighter died at the scene, another died a few days later in the hospital. Stackpole was burned so severely he could have retired honorably then with a full pension, but he was determined to walk again and to come back to the job.
Six days before 9/11, Stackpole was promoted to Captain. His first day on the job in that position was September 10th. He had been honored as “Irishman of the Year” at the Great Irish Fair just the weekend before. Nicknamed “Jobs” because he loved his work that much, Stackpole was off duty as of 7AM on 9/11, but he responded into the South Tower minutes before it came down.
In a public service announcement he taped for the hospital that brought him back after the 1998 fire, Stackpole proclaimed that “The greatest high you can get in life is by helping somebody.”
He left behind five children.