'He Could Never Sit Still'
Stephen Huczko Jr. was never one to do anything halfway. For three years, he went back to college to earn a nursing degree while working at night as a police officer for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. He cooked dinner for his family and didn't hesitate if that meant preparing a holiday meal for as many as 25. An avid runner, he finished the New York City Marathon in 2000.
"Steve always had bigger vision than most people," said Kevin Byrne, his brother-in-law.
And he always tried to include his four children, according to his wife, Kathleen Huczko. "Everything he did was for the kids, with the kids," she said. For two years, he encouraged his three oldest to participate with him in a local triathlon — he swam with Kaitlyn, now 17; biked with Liam, 14; and ran with Cullen, 7. When the family went hiking two summers ago, he carried the youngest, Aidan, 5.
Officer Huczko, 44, of Hampton, N.J., was at the Port Authority's Jersey City headquarters on the morning of Sept. 11. He was among those who rushed to help with the rescue effort. Officer Huczko's plan was to retire in five years and start a second career as a nurse. "He could never sit still," Mrs. Huczko said. "It was the idea of continuing to help people."
Officer Huczko is buried in a cemetery near Ken Lockwood Gorge, an area in Hunterdon County, N.J., where he used to like to jog, especially with his children.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on March 24, 2002.