CBS 2 - January 09, 2019
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Tributes are growing across the city as the FDNY mourns the loss of Firefighter Steven Pollard.
The 30-year-old firefighter fell to his death while trying to help two people hurt in a car crash on the Belt Parkway’s Mill Basin Bridge late Sunday night in Brooklyn.
“Any job we gave him, he accomplished it. Any task we asked him to do, he did it well,” Capt. James Quinn said during a bunting ceremony Monday.
“He was a great young man, always came to work happy, always had a smile on his face,” said Lt. Philip Miller. “He would have made a great leader.”
Pollard had only been a firefighter for a year and a half when he made the ultimate sacrifice.
Fire officials said he was attempting to cross the Jersey barriers on the bridge to reach the accident but slipped through a 3-foot gap and fell 52 feet.
“This is a dangerous job. We all know that,” Quinn said. “But we love this job, and Steven loved this job.”
Travis Simms was one of the people trapped in those two cars.
“He risked his life in order to save mine and he ended up making the ultimate sacrifice,” he told CBS2 on Monday. “He’s definitely my hero. May he rest in peace.”
Simms, a correction officer at Rikers Island, was on his way to work when he said he hit a patch of ice that sent his car spinning. Another car hit his, rolling it over.
“I didn’t see him fall down, but I seen a few come over and then I heard the commotion, just ‘Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god,'” he said. “When I arrived at the hospital, that’s when I found out he didn’t make it.”
Pollard was following in the footsteps of his father, who served more than three decades with the FDNY, and his brother, who’s now in his 11th year with the department.
“He was bred to be a fireman, he was going to be a great fireman, just like his father and brother,” Quinn added.
On Monday, there were tributes from the water to the highways as his casket was taken on a procession to the Marine Park Funeral Home, where his family held each other close and firefighters paid their respects to the somber sound of bagpipes.
Pollard’s body will lie in repose Wednesday from 7 to 9 p.m., Thursday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. His funeral mass will be held Friday at 11:30 a.m. at Good Shepherd R.C. Church.