By Larry Celona and Leonard Greene New York Post
Two badges of honor will be resurrected this week when the sons of Port Authority police officers killed in the 9/11 attacks button up their uniforms and follow in their brave fathers’ footsteps.
Liam Huczko, 26, and Patrick Gorman, 24, grew up idolizing their fathers, and were grief-stricken when their dads made the ultimate sacrifice.
But the line-of-duty deaths that resulted from the terrorist strikes did nothing to discourage the proud sons from a career in law enforcement.
If anything, the attacks emboldened them.
“I’m very excited about becoming a Port Authority police officer,” said Huczko, whose father, Stephen, 44, was found buried with his colleagues amid the rubble with a woman they were trying to rescue.
“My father enjoyed the job. He enjoyed helping people. He was proud of what he did.”
The elder Huczko, a father of four, was a 15-year veteran who worked a night shift at Newark Airport, and who rushed to the towers that horrible day.
During the day, he studied nursing, and graduated with a nursing degree from Raritan Valley Community College in Somerville, NJ, in 1995.
Gorman was only 11 when his father, Thomas, perished in the collapse while attempting to rescue victims trapped in the World Trade Center. He said his dad was a good man who worked hard and took care of his family.
“I’m sure I felt every emotion that an 11-year-old could feel,” Gorman said. “I was always proud of him. He really liked going to work.”
The elder Gorman was a member of the PAPD’s Emergency Service Unit.
Huczko and Gorman will wear the badge numbers their fathers wore. Huczko will pin No. 1778 to his chest and Gorman will wear No. 1712 near his heart when they graduate on Friday.
Their hero fathers were among the 37 PA police officers who died on 9/11.
“I can’t think of a better tribute to our fallen officers than to have their children and close relatives follow them into service here at the Port Authority Police Department,” said Joseph Dunne, the PA’s chief security officer.
The graduating class includes 26 military veterans and 39 women, including Jennifer Morrone, 27, whose cousin, Fred Morrone, 63[,] was the Port Authority’s superintendent of police and director of public safety. Fred Morrone was last seen on his way to meet up with first responders who were rescuing trapped workers.
“I come from a law-enforcement family,” said Jennifer Morrone, whose mother is a lieutenant in the NYPD.
“This was a natural thing for me. It made sense.
“I feel I’ve become spiritually closer to him. I’ll be thinking of him Friday when I graduate.”