I am proud to remember Joseph Marchbanks Jr. who was a Battalion
Chief in Harlem, but he preferred to be called a firefighter. A 22-year
veteran, Chief Marchbanks garnered four promotions by the time he died
at age 47, but "he wasn't one to brag," said his wife, Teresa.
Still, Chief Marchbanks had a lot to brag about.
A Bronx native, he qualified for the police force and the fire
department in the same week, he chose the latter, never looked back.
"He loved his job," said his friend (and stickball teammate) Frank McDonagh.
He lived in Nanuet, N.Y., with his wife, Teresa, and his children,
Lauren, 14, and Ryan, 8. "He had an extremely good sense of humor. He
held the family together, he was the hub," said his sister, Kathleen
Allison. She said he coached his daughter's softball team and was a
regular at all the soccer and baseball games his son played in.
Marchbanks' survivors include a twin brother in Boston. -- Bill Kaufman
At the firehouse, he organized study groups to help others pass
tests for promotions. "He taught without you realizing you were
learning," said his friend and colleague, Lieutenant Kevin Guy.
Ray Joseph Marchbanks JR. was a firefighter originally assigned to
Engine Company 73 and later transferred "across the floor" into Ladder
42. His contagious smile was always present. Joe's willingness to help;
whether at a fire, a practical joke, or to benefit a brother who needed
him was also a constant that could be depended on. His love of, "The
Job", was evident in his good natured professionalism wherever he was.
He made his mark on the job everywhere he went as he was promoted to
Lieutenant, then to Captain and finally to Battalion Chief where he was
assigned to Battalion 12. Joe's memory will live on in the hearts and
minds of all the members of The House on Prospect Avenue in the Bronx.
A Memorial Service
was held on
October 26, 2001
It is very likely I worked with Chief Marchbanks when I worked in
Harlem as a Paramedic. I worked more than a few fires, so I am sure he
was there. FDNY are a great bunch of heroes and Chief Marchbanks made
Let us take a moment on 9/11 to remember him and the others that lost their lives on that fateful day.
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