PATRICK BYRNE, 39, of New York, studied accounting for two years in community college, but "being confined to a chair – it wasn't him," said his mother, Anne Byrne. So Byrne started his own roofing company in the mid 1980s, and eventually became a firefighter, graduating from the fire academy in 1994. "He was an excellent firefighter who knew his job," said Byrne's fire Capt. Thomas Giordano. Whenever a family member would ask Byrne what he did at the firehouse, his mother said he would reply, "Fighting fires, saving lives." His mother said the response was really "tongue-in cheek," but "that's what they do, isn't it?"
Copyright © 2001 The Associated Press