FDNY Firefighters' Sons Graduate Academy Together


Updated: 09-13-2006 12:24:33 PM


STEPHANIE GASKELL
Courtesy of The New York Post

Like fathers, like sons.

Philip Parr, John Norman and Joe D'Amico all graduated from the Fire Academy together in 1979.

Yesterday, their three sons graduated together, carrying on the legacy of their fathers' 27-year friendship.

"To have all three of our sons graduate - it's amazing," said proud papa Parr, who now works for the Department of Homeland Security.

Parr's 22-year-old son, Paul, of Shirley, L.I., will be assigned to Engine 214-Ladder 111 in Brooklyn - also where 25-year-old John Norman Jr. will work.

Anthony D'Amico, 22, of Staten Island, will be assigned to his father's former firehouse, Engine 280 in Brooklyn.

"I grew up in that firehouse," Anthony said, adding that he knew all seven men from that firehouse who were killed on 9/11.

"None of them was ever unhappy," he said. "But you don't really want to dwell on that. I hope it doesn't happen again, but you can't change your life for something that may or may not happen."

"I think I made the right decision," he said.

Retired dad Joe is concerned, however.

"I got out of here in one piece," he said, his voice trailing off.

The decision wasn't always clear cut for Norman Jr. After college, he went to work for Hearst Magazines in the consumer-marketing department, but quickly realized it wasn't for him.

"I wanted to do something more meaningful," the Merrick, L.I., resident said, adding that 9/11 "put the idea back in my head" to follow in his father's footsteps.

His dad said he couldn't be more proud.

"It's not for everybody - but he's seen the life it's given me," Norman Sr. said of his son.

For Paul Parr, the decision to join the FDNY was cemented by 9/11.

Dad Philip took him to Ground Zero three weeks later and - hoping to discourage him - asked, "You still want to be a fireman?"

Paul replied, "More than ever."

stephanie.gaskell@nypost.com


Republished with permission of The New York Post.
http://cms.firehouse.com/content/art...9&sectionId=46
photo
Courtesy of Gregory P. Mango/The New York Post

From left, John Norman Jr. and dad John Sr.; Philip Parr and son Paul; and Anthony D'Amico and dad Joe.