NY Daily News - December 30, 2014by Jennifer Fermino
Speaking in front of over 300 of the FDNY's newest firefighters, Mayor de Blasio on Monday lauded the bravest for their courage and told them the city needs heroes like them "more than ever." "You made the heroic choice, you made that choice to serve ... people you don't even know, but whose humanity you are here to protect," he said at the FDNY Academy on Randall's Island.
He said serving in the FDNY is the "highest calling of public service."
"It is a profoundly important choice for New York City. Times like these, the city needs heroes more than ever," he said.
De Blasio, whose frayed relationship with some members of the NYPD has led to cops turning their backs on him in protest, was greeted politely by the graduating group of new fire fighters.
The new firefighters, who wore sworn in after de Blasio spoke, clapped warmly for the mayor.
The biggest round of applause, however, went to FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro, a former firefighter who served as chief of department after 9-11.
Speaking of Mayor de Blasio, Nigro told the firefighters, "He's here to support the New York City Fire Department, which I know he loves and respects.
De Blasio said nearly half of the new 323 firefighters were minorities or women, one of the highest numbers in the department's history.
"You reflect everything good about this city," de Blasio said.