FDNY holds vigil to remember EMT Yadira Arroyo

Wednesday, March 22, 2017 04:10AM
Josh Einiger reports from the Morrisania section.

MORRISANIA, Bronx - The New York City Fire Department held an unbearably sad vigil for Yadira Arroyo, the hero EMT who was killed in the line of duty last week.

The vigil was held on Tuesday night outside EMS station 26 in the Morrisania section of the Bronx.

Their life's calling is to treat the sick, and to help the helpless. Every one of them is a hero, but Tuesday night they wept.

"We can't stop the inevitable, but one candle can light a thousand candles," said Jose Mendes, the victim's son.

They wept for Yadira Arroyo's eldest son Jose and his four little brothers, all now without a mom.

And they wept for Yadi: their coworker, their mentor, their hero.

"Yadi Arroyo died a hero of this city, and that's what we have to remember," said James Leonard, FDNY Chief of Department.

Arroyo spent 14 years as a city EMT, most of it right at EMS station 26 in the Bronx.

She died last Thursday, as she struggled for control of her own ambulance, against a deranged man who was trying to steal it.

But while there was no joy there Tuesday night, it was her 24-year-old son who reminded her brothers and sisters how they should move on in the face of such unmitigated anguish.

"Just only think about the good in her. No one think about what happened," Mendes said. "I'm almost at a loss for words. Until I think about all the good she's done. And then I feel like I have too much to say."

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