Bravest remembered

2 died on Black Sunday


Her voice cracking ever so slightly, an 11-year-old girl brought a firehouse full of big men to tears yesterday with a heart-wrenching poem about the day her father went to work to ride his red truck and never came home.

Lt. Curtis Meyran's daughter Angela proved she was every bit as brave as her dad as she faced a crowd of hundreds at a ceremony marking the first anniversary of the Black Sunday inferno that killed two firefighters and injured four others.

Quiet weeping filled the headquarters of Engine 46/Ladder 27 in the Bronx as firefighters, city officials, her mother, Jeanette, and sister Danine, 7, hung on Angela's every word.

"My father was a firefighter. He rode in a big red truck," she said. "And when he'd go to work each night, he'd say, 'Mom, wish me luck.'

"And my father went to work one day and he kissed us all goodbye. Little did we know that next morning, we'd all cry."

Her heartfelt words brought a standing ovation from those gathered to honor Meyran and Lt. John Bellew, who were killed when they jumped 50 feet to escape the flames on Jan. 23, 2005.

"Curt and John weren't heroes on just that January day. They were heroes every day," Mayor Bloomberg said at the plaque dedication. "Our city is forever grateful that they proudly chose a life of duty, courage and danger to protect us."

As Bellew's four kids scampered around their stoic mother, Eileen, Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta reminded the crowd the sacrifice of the families continues.

"Firefighters define courage and their families are part of that definition of courage because every day for the family of a firefighter is uncertain," Scoppetta said.

Meyran, a father of three and a 15-year veteran, was remembered as a skilled carpenter who built a kitchen table, a humidor and a weightroom at firehouses he had worked in and remodeled his Malverne, L.I., house.

He was a prankster who dumped water on his comrades and made chicken Parmagiana heros out of yellow sponges.

"To Curt, I say, 'Thank you for sharing your life with me,'" said Meyran's widow, Jeanette, 46, wearing his white uniform shirt. "'The children and I owe it all to you. We couldn't be more proud to be the Curt Meyran family.'"

Verses of love to hero father

"The Last Alarm," a poem written and read by Angela Meyran, 11, daughter of FDNY Lt. Curtis Meyran (right), who was killed in a Bronx fire a year ago yesterday:

My father was a firefighter
He rode in a big red truck
And when he'd go to work each night
He'd say, "Mom, wish me luck"
And Dad would not come home again till sometimes the next day
A fireman's life is easy
He eats and sleeps and plays
And sometimes he [doesn't] fight fires for days and days and days
When I first heard these comments, I was too young to understand
Because I knew when the people had trouble, Dad was there to lend a hand
And my father went to work one day and he kissed us all goodbye
Little did we know that next morning we'd all cry
My father gave his life that next day when the fire got too hot
And we wondered why he'd risk his life for someone he didn't know
But now I realize the greatest gift a man can give is to lay down his life down upon the line so that someone else might live
So as we go on from day to day and we pray to God above, say a prayer for your brothers. They may save your loved ones.

Originally published on January 24, 2006