Lt. Paul Mitchell, 46, was working at Engine 5 on 9/11. He had just finished his 24-hour shift and was on the FDR Drive headed home when he saw or heard about the attack and headed over to Ladder 110 in Brooklyn, his first firehouse where he began his career in 1987. By the time he got there, L110 was already dispatched, but he grabbed gear and hopped into an FDNY van headed to the scene.
Mitchell was a tall man, 6’4”, and nicknamed “Big Daddy.” He coached girls’ basketball, soccer and golf at the parish school even after his two daughters had graduated and headed on to college. “Everybody relied on “Big Daddy,” one of his closest friends said. “Even chiefs came to him for advice. Paul had an answer for everything.”