We Honor a True American Hero

This photo released by the New York City Fire Department shows firefighter Christian P. Engeldrum. Engeldrum, 39, was killed in action Monday, Nov. 29, 2004, while on active duty while serving with the Army National Guard in Iraq. Engeldrum is the first firefighter, or city employee of any kind, to die in Iraq since the U.S.-led war began, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. He was a five-year fire veteran who served with Ladder Co. 61 in the Bronx, and previously served as a police officer in the 47th Precinct.

In responding to the attacks at the World Trade Center only to later join the National Guard, Christian Engeldrum became the FDNY’s 344th to be lost as a result of September 11th.

 

Father Whalen of St. Benedict’s Church stands beside the angel that hung on the lecturn during this solemn service. He described how Christian’s name “Engeldrum” translated into “Angel” adding even more meaning to his personalized banner.

NEW YORK Dec 1, 2004 — A New York City firefighter who had responded to the World Trade Center attack was killed in Iraq while serving with the Army National Guard, city officials said.

Sgt. Christian P. Engeldrum, 39, is the first FDNY firefighter to die in Iraq since the U.S.-led war began, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. Engeldrum was killed Monday when his vehicle came under attack outside Baghdad.

“I join all New Yorkers in mourning his loss and pray that his family finds comfort in the innumerable ways he touched so many lives,” Bloomberg said in a statement.

Another New York firefighter, Daniel J. Swift, 24, was riding in the same vehicle and suffered shrapnel wounds, Bloomberg said. Swift was in Germany for treatment and was expected to recover.

Both Engeldrum and Swift spent months digging through the rubble of the World Trade Center after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Engeldrum was a five-year fire veteran who previously served as a police officer. He was on active duty in the Army from 1986 to 1991.

“He was a great fireman,” fire Lt. Brian Horton said at the Bronx firehouse where Engeldrum served. “He was 100 percent soldier. He loved his country, and he loved being a fireman. He was a lucky man he got to do what he loved.”

Engeldrum is survived by a wife and two sons.