Deputy Chief Raymond Matthew Downey, age 63 of Deer Park, LI, FDNY-Deputy Chief of Special Operations Command, died heroically in the line of duty at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, a week before his 64th birthday.
He commanded the rescue units of the New York Fire Department and oversaw the search and rescue work after the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995. As chief of the Special Operations Command, he also oversaw marine operations and the handling of hazardous materials. He was one of the nation's leading experts on rescue operations at collapsed buildings. Two of his sons are New York firefighters. Chief Downey is believed to have died while trying to help a man with an injured leg in the ruins of the Marriott World Trade Hotel, which had been damaged by the collapsing south tower of the World Trade Center. He was heard telling other firefighters to get out of the area because the north tower was about to collapse. He also was a member of a national advisory commission on domestic response to terrorism.
He is survived by his beloved wife, Rosalie (nee Princiotta); loving and adored father of Joseph & Lynn, Marie & Girolamo Tortorici, Chuck & Melissa, Ray & Christine, Kathy & Brian Ugalde; cherished Poppy of Gina Marie, Nicolette Rose, Peter Raymond, Joseph James, Connor Joseph, Olivia Faith & Kayla Rae; dear brother to Eugene, Thomas and the late Joseph and Alice Routledge; dear brother-in-law of Eileen Downey, Jean Downey, and Sal Princiotta. Also survived by many loving nieces, nephews and cherished family and friends.
Memorial viewing at the Claude R. Boyd-Caratozzolo Funeral Home, 1785 Deer Park Ave, Deer Park, NY on Thursday, December 13, 2001 & Friday from 2-5PM and 7-9: 30PM. A memorial mass will be held at St. Cyril & Methodius RC Church at 11:00AM on Saturday, December 15th.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his loving memory to the Deputy Chief, Raymond Downey Scholarship Charity Fund (D.C.R.D.S.C. Fund), 7 Bradish Lane, Babylon, NY 11702.|
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