By Ricky Keeler Staten Island Advance
Hundreds of Staten Islanders gathered at the Rescue 5 Firehouse in Concord for the plaque dedication of veteran firefighter Lawrence Sullivan. The plaque ceremony took place on Tuesday in remembrance of Sullivan’s death a year ago.
Sullivan, an FDNY firefighter for 23 years, was honored for his rescue and recovery efforts at the World Trade Center after 9/11. He fought an 18-month battle with a rare intestinal cancer before he died last year, resulting from a disease linked to the remains at the Twin Towers.He was a senior man and a union delegate for Rescue 5 since 2001.
Present at Tuesday’s ceremony were Sullivan’s wife of 32 years, the former Ginny Clearwater; his three sons, Larry Jr., Robert, and James, and his two daughters, Erin and Kathleen Sullivan, as well as family and friends.
Speaking at the ceremony were FDNY Commissioner Salvatore J. Cassano; Chief of Department Edward Kilduff; President of the Uniformed Firefighters Association Steve Cassidy; Firefighter Joe Esposito, and Sullivan’s son Robert.
Currently, Sullivan’s three sons are awaiting possible entrance into the Fire Department, in memory of their father.
The theme throughout the ceremony was Sullivan’s love for the Staten Island community and his high character.
“Larry always had that higher sense of community, which represented Rescue 5′s sense of community,” said Kilduff.
“He was an unbelievable character in the class of characters,” said Esposito before unveiling the Sully’s Way address sign inside Rescue 5.
During his speech, Esposito mentioned the fundraiser for Sullivan in July 2012 at the Staaten that was attended by Cassano.
One of the heartfelt speeches was given by Sullivan’s son, Robert Sullivan, who is currently in the NYPD. He talked about his father’s time at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center and how he would always show optimism and a quick wit.
“There were two things my dad loved the most,” remarked a tearful Sullivan. “Family and being a firefighter.”