Firefighter Paul Keating

167 Keating fb

Paul Keating, 38, performed his first life-saving rescue just weeks after graduating the academy in 1995, but it was from water not fire. A strong swimmer, he pulled a drowning man from the ocean in New Jersey, administered CPR, and saved his life. Living right behind Ten House across from the WTC, Keating was awakened on the morning of 9/11 by the sound of the first plane crashing into Tower One.  Assigned to Ladder 5, he was off duty that day, but went to 10 House to get gear. He called his sister to say he was okay and was going to the WTC to “help his brothers.” When his family returned to his apartment later, all the windows were blown out and thick dust covered everything in sight.
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2 Responses to Firefighter Paul Keating

  1. Audrey Burtrum-Stanley says:

    This afternoon I went to the grocery in downtown Little Rock. A young man walked past me wearing a navy T-shirt with a Firefighter’s emblem on the chest. Immediately, I asked if he was ‘a firefighter as my son is one.’ He explained the shirt was a personal sort of ‘wearable memorial’ for a special New York City firefighter – his cousin, who had died while helping on 9-11-01. He spoke movingly of his relative with such awe, told of his many heroic acts prior to his final endeavor, I had to look him up on the Internet.
    The cousin proved to be all that was spoken and much more…
    While standing in the store here in Arkansas, the two of us never exchanged our own names – just the name of his cousin. This man’s brief life may be over, but knowledge of him along with his deeds, values and remarkable courage, are still spreading. The young firefighter created a legacy that is worthy of sharing with others and inducing great pride. This was a very honorable young man. I wish I had known PAUL KEATING – instead of just knowing ‘of him,’ as he must have been wonderful.

  2. Jeanne Keating says:

    Hi Audrey,
    I was so moved reading your response here. It was very kind of you to take the time to write. You spoke to my wonderful extraordinary cousin Billy McAloon. I am Paulies sister Jeanne. I called my brother after the first plane hit. He lived near the trade center . We were worried because he lived right there . He said there is so much glass flying and noise. He said ” Jeanne , this is terrorism”. I asked him if he was ok and he said. “Yes I am OK and I am going in and I will bring a camera with me. That was that was the last time we spoke. The camera was never returned to us either. A wonderful priest wrote a letter when they brought Paulie into the morgue. We have been communicating ever since. Actually, Paulie was the last body found.The story was on the front page of the NY news. Everyone at Ground Zero treated those found at Ground Zero with such respect and lined up as they remove the body .
    There were 11 deaths in my brothers firehouse alone. Thank you again for taking the time.

    Jeanne

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