Fire Buffs promote the general welfare of the fire and rescue service and protect its heritage and history. Famous Fire Buffs through the years include New York Fire Surgeon Harry Archer, Boston Pops Conductor Arthur Fiedler, New York Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia and - legend has it - President George Washington.

Paterson Riverside Station - Photo by Dr. Thomas Dayspring

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


One of Paterson's most decorated firefighters, Captain Elliot McGuire, died Nov. 29 after a brief fight with pancreatic cancer, according to the web site

McGuire, who was 66, thrived under pressure and dangerous conditions, according to colleagues.

During his 34-year career, McGuire received commendations for lifesaving, including a 1993 blaze in which he directed firefighters to evacuate a house before it was swept by flames.

"Elliot was a fireman's fireman," said Captain Mike Barr, quoted by "He had the knowledge. He had experience and he inspired guys by just going to fires with him.''

McGuire was promoted to captain in 1992, and worked at Engine Co. 2 in the Riverside and Ladder Co. 1 at fire headquarters, according to the web site.

In 1989, McGuire rescued a child from a fire on Godwin Avenue and revived the 7-year-old victim with CPR. In 1991, he helped rescue five people from a Park Avenue fire.

The save most remembered, though, was the 1993 house fire on East 23rd Street. Captain Mike D'Arco, one of the firefighters to escape, said: ``I used to call him my savior."