If all goes according to plan, three Red Hook street corners will be renamed in honor of neighborhood firefighters killed on September 11.
Members of Community Board 6’s Transportation Committee approved requests to have the intersection of Richards and Seabring streets near Engine Company 202 and Ladder Company 101 renamed to “Seven in Heaven Street.” Requests were also approved to rename the corner of Lorraine and Smith streets “Henderson-Regenhard Way” in honor of two firefighters who were assigned Engine Company 279 and Ladder Company 131 on the fateful Tuesday when they were called to respond to the Twin Towers collapsing to the ground.
Residents also filed a petition to rename the corner of Lorraine Street and Hamilton Avenue -- just down the block -- to “Red Hook Heroes Run” in honor of the five firefighters from Engine Company 279 and Ladder Company 131 killed, the “Red Hook Happy Hookers Hook and Ladder.”
Petitioner Josefina Sanfeliu, who stood proudly with a retired firefighter and a young firefighter assigned to a Red Hook firehouse as she made her request, said that Firefighter Ronnie Lee Henderson and Christian Regenhard were floater firefighters who were assigned to Engine Company 279 that week.
Neither one of them has a street renamed for them in the city, she said.
“The world knows little of these two firefighters. Beyond this Gowanus firehouse two names have no public marker and this must change,” Sanfeliu wrote in her petition. “As they chose to be NYC firefighters, they also chose to run into collapsing chaos, risking and losing their lives for people they knew not, but who needed to know them.”
The committee overwhelmingly approved the symbolic street changes.
It also approved applications to co-name the corner of Carroll and Henry streets “Mary D’Angelo’s Corner” in honor of a longtime crossing guard who helped children get to Sacred Hearts and St. Stephens School, and Third Avenue between 10th and 11th streets “Arthur P. Espositio Way” in the memory of a beloved neighborhood resident and doorman who was killed in Manhattan two years ago.
Esposito’s mother Cookie was on hand with a heart-felt plea to the committee to have the street he grew up on named after him.
“If you knew him, you would have loved him,” she said of the John Jay High School graduate. “He saw the best in everyone. He was my hero.”
The entire board is expected to ratify the committee’s vote during the full Community Board 6 meeting next week.
©2009 Community News Group
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