Retired NYPD Captain Carmine Cantalino Dies at 61 of 9/11-Related Illness

NY Daily News - October 03, 2017


A retired NYPD captain who immigrated to the U.S. as a teenager and developed a strong patriotic sense of duty died Friday from a 9/11-related illness, family and union officials said Sunday.

Capt. Carmine Cantalino, a Staten Island resident who was born in Naples, Italy, spent 25 years working for the NYPD, including a time spent running the 62nd Precinct in Bensonhurst, friends and family said.

Cantalino died just 10 days after his 61st birthday, according to his youngest daughter Kelly Cantalino, 19. He is survived by his six children and wife Jacqueline.

He never hesitated to labor for hours at Ground Zero and "gave no thought to the toxic dust that would result in a fatal lung condition," Kelly said. "He insisted on being present, as all of Manhattan was in need."

Cantalino came to the U.S. from Italy when he was 14 and spent "the next 46 years of his life making America his new, truly loved home," his daughter said. He graduated from The John Jay College of Criminal Justice, becoming the first in his family to obtain a college degree.

Kelly said her father was a patriot and was honored to serve his city and country.

"His pride for his new country led him to serve 25 years for the NYPD, retiring at captain status," she said.

Roy Richter, president of the NYPD Captains Endowment Association, sent out condolences on Twitter Sunday.

Cantalino was also a respected soccer coach for five different Staten Island teams.

"As a father, coach, mentor, and police officer, he truly was a man who could leave you with laughter in your heart and a touch of wisdom in your mind from a single encounter," Kelly said. "A man who did it his way and no one else's, a bold man indeed with a large, courageous heart."

A funeral has been scheduled for Tuesday at the Colonial Funeral Home on Hylan Blvd. in Oakwood.

Authorities say 159 FDNY personnel and 133 NYPD members have now died from 9/11-linked illnesses.

As of August, the federal September 11th Victim Compensation Fund has given out $2.8 billion to nearly 17,000 victims suffering from cancers or injuries sustained during the terror attacks.