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Thread: Badly Burned Fireman Goes Home A Hero

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    Badly Burned Fireman Goes Home A Hero

    BADLY BURNED FIREMAN GOES HOME A HERO

    By JENNIFER GOULD

    January 7, 2003 --

    Doctors gave him a 50-50 shot at survival after he was burned in a Queens blaze two months ago - but firefighter Stephen Halliday lived to beat the odds.

    And yesterday, with his wife and daughters by his side, and about 100 FDNY colleagues saluting, Halliday, 42, was wheeled out of New York-Presbyterian Weill Cornell's burn center - a hero to all.

    Halliday's ordeal began Nov. 7 when he was one of the first to respond to a house fire in St. Albans, Queens.

    "But the heat became too hot. We started backing up and something fell on top of me. I'm not really sure what," Halliday said. The next thing he remembers is the ambulance. The fire left Halliday with burns over 55 percent of his body - including his head, face, arms, hands and torso.

    Six operations later, Halliday is going home to Babylon, L.I., and his wife, Linda, 42, and daughters Emily, 11, and Sarah, 10.

    Alex Barone, 25, a rookie firefighter also injured in the fire, credits Halliday with saving his life.

    "He's my hero," Barone said. "He told us to back out. The room lit up in a matter of seconds."

    Halliday said it may take two years before he'll be 100 percent. And by then, he fears, city firehouses will have changed beyond recognition.

    "They're taking everything away," Halliday said of the city's plans to cut the FDNY budget and reduce crew sizes. "There was supposed to be money for terrorism training. But all the money that was supposed to come in [after 9/11] is gone."



    http://www.nypost.com/news/regionalnews/52775.htm



    LUCKY MAN:
    Stephen Halliday, who was burned over 55 percent of his body, leaves the hospital yesterday with wife Linda.
    Helayne Seidman

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    Firefighter's big step

    Firefighter's big step

    Lieutenant grateful on leaving burn unit

    By ALICE MCQUILLAN
    DAILY NEWS POLICE BUREAU

    When Fire Lt. Stephen Halliday rose from his wheelchair yesterday, his burn unit nurses, surgeons and friends in the FDNY could not stop applauding.

    Halliday, 42, signaled for quiet by holding up his bandaged hands, so burned that parts of every finger are gone.

    "So many people to thank," began Halliday on his 60th and last day at the Weill Cornell Medical Center, where his life was saved.

    Halliday arrived there Nov. 7 - the most seriously injured New York City firefighter in 2002.

    His entire scalp was seared off, fire gloves were melted to his hands and second- and third-degree burns covered 55% of his body. He had only a 50% chance of survival, said Dr. Palmer Bessey, his surgeon.

    Halliday, a 15-year veteran, had been trapped inside a burning Queens home while leading firefighters from Ladder Co. 165. He said the heat became too intense and he decided to get them out when disaster struck.

    "We started backing out and then the roof lit up," he said. "I'm not really sure what fell on top of me. Then I just remember the guys coming in....They put the fire out, they got me in the nick of time and everything's worked out great since then."

    He has made it through 10 operations, including skin grafts and a temporary tracheotomy, an attack of pneumonia and 33 days on a ventilator.

    'No worries'

    The people who helped him through it all were there yesterday. Among them: 100 firefighters who visited him and took care of his family, a highway cop who helped speed him to Cornell in 23 minutes from Nassau University Medical Center and the burn unit nurse whom he hugged goodbye.

    "I can't say enough how much I'm grateful for everything everybody's done," said Halliday. "It's made it easy. I have no worries other than trying to get back to where I was."

    As FDNY bagpipes skirled, a white limo took Halliday, his wife, Linda, and daughters Sarah, 10, and Emily, 11, to the Burke Rehabilitation Center in White Plains, where he will undergo physical therapy.

    Bessey said Halliday's prognosis is "terrific" but he needs time to rebuild his stamina.

    "I'm hoping that they are going to get my hands functioning," the lieutenant said. "Everything else is going pretty good."

    Halliday's not sure when he can return to work - but he wants to help other burn victims.

    "One of the doctors said two years and I should be 100% back to where I was before this," Halliday said. "But it's all, I think, a guessing game. You know, I don't think anybody can say for sure."

    Originally published on January 7, 2003


    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/loca...1p-46463c.html

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    A Hero's Big Move

    A Hero's Big Move
    Friefighter leaves hospital.

    January 7, 2003


    Stephen Halliday, the New York City fire lieutenant from West Babylon who was nursed back to life at a New York hospital after being burned on more than half of his body in November, said yesterday that it was "hard to leave" the Manhattan facility.

    "It's hard to leave this place because they have been so good to me," Halliday said, as family members pushed his wheelchair. Halliday, 42, was going from the Weill Cornell Medical Center Burn Center at New York-Presbyterian Hospital to another treatment facility, Burke Rehabilitation Hospital. He left Weill after a series of painful operations and skin grafts.

    Halliday's comment brightened the mood of one of his firefighter friends who was there for the move, John Montani of Babylon. "He always sees the glass half full," Montani said.

    Halliday also thanked his nurse at the hospital, Nancy Henson, who he said "saved my life." His wife, Linda, and the couple's two daughters, Emily, 12, and Sarah, 10, also were there to help Halliday make the big step.

    The fire lieutenant suffered serious burns to 55 percent of his body. His company, Ladder 165 in Cambria Heights, went to a fire at a St. Albans house on Nov. 7, and he was critically injured by a sudden burst of flame.

    Other firefighters found him unconscious inside the house, according to a department spokesman.

    Two other firefighters were hurt in the incident, although far less seriously.

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