Inspiration for Youth
Whenever Firefighter Jose A. Guadalupe saw a cluster of young boys hanging in the shadows of his housing complex, Rochedale Village in Jamaica, Queens, he would leap into his spiel about the importance of school, said his mother, Rowena Guadalupe. "He loved to mentor," Mrs. Guadalupe said. "He told my neighbor, Jamal, not to hang out in front of the buildings. He would say, `Go home and study.' "
He encouraged others, too. In his honor, neighbors placed a miniature fire truck and an American flag at the base of a tree outside his apartment building, she said. "Everyone has told me that it will not be removed until the digging at ground zero is over. After that, they plan to have a plaque made for the outside of the building."
While Mr. Guadalupe, 37, cut a large figure at six feet and about 200 pounds, he was quiet. He kept to himself, preferring to build model cars, ski, play basketball, sketch and ride his mountain bike. He was an avid reader, enjoying everything from "The Adventures of Marco Polo" to physics, said Lt. Louis Robinson, who attended the fire academy with Mr. Guadalupe 10 years ago. They also worked together at Engine Company 54 in Manhattan.
Mr. Guadalupe had recently taken up the guitar. He was captivated by Jimi Hendrix. "The Long Watch" and "Stone Free" were just two of the Hendrix hits that left him spellbound.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on April 28, 2002.