Home Sept. 11, 2001 Kevin M. Delano, Firefighter and 9/11 Rescue Worker

Kevin M. Delano, Firefighter and 9/11 Rescue Worker

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Kevin M. Delano, a firefighter who worked to find survivors of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the World Trade Center, has died of leukemia. The former Howard Beach, Queens, resident was 54 and died July 30. As a member of Ladder 142 in Ozone Park, Queens, Delano was one of the first people to arrive at the rubble of Ground Zero after the skyscrapers crumbled.

He worked at the site for more than 40 hours straight. He had hoped to find any survivors, but especially sought his close friend, Ray York, of Howard Beach, who was killed.

Delano was retired from the Fire Department of New York and had served as chief of the West Hamilton Beach Volunteer Fire Department in Queens. He also had worked as a transit police officer and a member of the Coast Guard.

In 1980, he married Roseann Pannhorst in Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Howard Beach. Four years later, the couple had a son, Kevin. All the while, Delano balanced his duties as a firefighter, husband and father, often referred to by relatives as the rock of the family.

After retiring from the fire department in 2003 because of health conditions, Delano moved to Blakeslee, Pa., in the Poconos, where he played golf regularly, took up fishing and relaxed. He was later diagnosed with leukemia. His cancer was in remission for some time, then the disease reappeared and he received a bone-marrow transplant.

His doctor said he likely got leukemia because of burning benzene at the World Trade Center site, his wife said yesterday.

A funeral Mass was celebrated Monday at Our Lady of Grace. The ceremony was followed by a full honor guard, including bagpipes and a fire department funeral procession that drove by the West Hamilton Beach Volunteer Fire Department.

Burial was at St. Charles Cemetery in Farmingdale.

Besides his wife and son, Delano is survived by his brothers, Raymond of Virginia and Gerard of Howard Beach; and his sisters, Loretta Giordano of Ozone Park, Patti Fogarty of Howard Beach, Cathy Delano of Gainesville, Fla., and Barbara Jean Johnson, Maureen Chioffee, Jeananne Quinn and Vicky Joyner, all of Vidalia, Ga.

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