'A True Renaissance Man'
John P. Williamson was not a casual golfer. He signed up for golf lessons, practiced in his yard and even made a player of his son, Marc. The pair routinely disappeared for hours on a golf course. "He was just so focused," said his wife, Mary. "He was able to do anything."
Battalion Chief Williamson, 46, showed the same dedication to his job and family. In his 23 years with the New York Fire Department, he rose through the ranks to become chief of Battalion 6 in Lower Manhattan. And at home in Warwick, N.Y., he designed and built a wood-and-glass house for his family. He made the furniture, too.
Chief Williamson later added a basketball court for his daughter, Jessica, and rearranged his schedule so that he could attend all her school games. He kept lunch dates with his mother, Lucy, even when he was busy. "He was a true Renaissance man," his wife said. "We got a lot of work out of him in the winter when there was too much frost on the ground to play golf."
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 13, 2001.
LT. JOHN WILLIAMSON, 46, of Warwick, N.Y., a New York fire department battalion commander, was passionate about life and dedicated to his job. "There is no greater love than this – to lay down one's life for one's friends," said his brother, Dan. Williamson's teen-age daughter, Jessica, said her father had a smile that could light up a room. "He was never fake to anyone," she said. "My dad believed 110 percent in everything he did. I will always be my daddy's little girl."
Copyright © 2001 The Associated Press