East Franklin Fire Co.,
FIREIFGHTER LINE-OF-DUTY DEATH FUNERAL
Franklin Township, Somerset County, N.J.
On Tuesday, April 11, 2006, 21-year-old Kevin Apuzzio, a volunteer firefighter with East Franklin Fire Co., died in the line of duty while attempting to rescue an elderly woman from her burning home on Whittier Avenue in Franklin Township, Somerset County.
Apuzzio had led a crew of firefighters into the Cape Cod style home in an effort to rescue 75-year-old Betty Scott.
The firefighters located Scott in her bedroom and were in the process of carrying her from the house when the floor suddenly collapsed, sending Apuzzio and Scott into the burning basement. Despite valiant rescue efforts made by other firefighters both died.
Apuzzio, who grew up in Union Township, Union County, had also been an EMT with Rutgers university Emergency Services and Union Township EMS.
Apuzzio was laid to rest with full fire department honors on Tuesday, April 18, 2006.
More than 3,000 uniformed firefighters from throughout the East Coast attended Apuzzio’s funeral mass held at St. Michael’s Church on Kelly Street in Union Township.
Among them were Lawrence Road Deputy Chief Chris Pangaldi, Capt. Michael Byrd, Capt. Michael Ratcliffe, Ff. Matthew Farletta, Ff. Ryan Dlabik, Ff. Sean Ryan, and Ff. Theresa Androvett.
The Lawrence Road firefighters traveled to Union Township in Car 22 in a convoy along with firefighters from Lawrenceville and Pennington Road fire companies.
The officers and members of Lawrence Road Fire Co. offer our sincerest condolences to the Apuzzio family and our brothers and sisters in the fire service at East Franklin Fire Co.
All photos copyright (c) 2006 by Michael Ratcliffe.