He Wrote Music, Prose, Studied Screenwriting

Christopher Pickford never wanted to be anything but a firefighter, although he had a number of talents.

Pickford, 32, also played the guitar with his band, "Ten Degree Lean," wrote music and prose, studied screenwriting and worked as a paralegal in the Queens district attorney's office.

But his heart was so set on firefighting that his parents, Linda and Thomas of Kew Gardens, rejoiced with him when he emerged as a firefighter with the last class of 2000. Just 18 months in the service, he was assigned to Engine Co. 201 in Brooklyn's Battalion 40.

When his mother, who also works in the Queens district attorney's office, learned of the disaster at 9 a.m., she called her son in the Brooklyn firehouse. "I said, 'Tell them your mother said you are not to go,' and he laughed," she recalls. He was one of four men from his company who entered Tower Two to search for survivors, 10 minutes before the tower collapsed.

"Chris was young, but he had the makings of a great firefighter," Capt. Luke Lynch said.

To his friends from Forest Hills High School, "Chris was the glue that held us together," said his close friend, Amy Whalley of Glendale. "He was the ringleader who planned our activities. We called him 'Super.'"

At 6-foot-5, Pickford was "a gentle giant, with a wonderful sense of humor," she said. "But he loved being a fireman and wouldn't have changed anything, even now."