Joseph Patrick Henry never played professional baseball, but there were plenty of people who thought he did. And some of them have his autograph.
By all accounts, Mr. Henry, a firefighter, who at 25, had worked only 11 months for the department, bore a striking resemblance to the pitcher David Cone. So much so that often people would whisper "Is that David Cone?" and ask for his autograph. A fervent baseball player and Yankee fan, Mr. Henry could not help but oblige a few of those requests, said his mother, Alice Henry.
When his mother was cooking dinner, Mr. Henry would go out onto the terrace and shout, "Mom's cooking my favorite stew!" so loudly that Mrs. Henry would jokingly threaten to call the police. (This continued even after he moved into his own apartment in the same building, in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn, his mother said.)
One of six children in a family of many firefighters ‹ his grandfather, father, uncle and two brothers ‹ Mr. Henry could be the frivolous one. "He was usually the first to arrive at a party and the last one to leave," said his longtime girlfriend, Julia Corrales. "He always said, 'We're young, we should enjoy these days.' "
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on October 23, 2001.