Heroic History of Lifesaving FDNY Fireboat Docked in Hudson Valley
Just yesterday people across America collectively celebrated in remembrance of the 22nd anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. It is a day that like few others in American history, lives on in infamy. On that day, 2.977 people tragically perished, many of them in the act of trying to save as many as they could. It is because of the efforts of those brave men and women, those who survived and those who didn't that the death toll that day did not rise to even higher totals.
In watching and reading about yesterday's tragic anniversary, I stumbled across an interesting piece of information. A historic FDNY fireboat that participated in 9/11 rescue efforts as well as other historic moments currently calls the Hudson Valley waters its current home.
Historic FDNY Fireboat John D. McKean's Service Record
After doing some reading, saying that John D. McKean is a historic vessel is an understatement. This boat served the FDNY for nearly six decades and in those six decades, it saw countless opportunities to go to work.
Most notably, the FDNY John D. McKean for its rescue efforts on 9/11. According to an article from Spectrum News, on that fateful day and in the following days, this vessel would make countless trips across the Hudson River taking shipload after shipload of people from the city to safety in New Jersey. In addition, this same boat would provide water that was necessary to fight the fires at what would inevitably become Ground Zero.
Years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the John D. McKean would be instrumental in another notorious New York event: The Miracle on the Hudson.
For those that may not remember, the "Miracle on the Hudson" occurred back on January 15, 2009. On that day, US Airways Flight 1549 leaving out of LaGuardia had to make an emergency landing on the Hudson River shortly after takeoff. All of the passengers aboard the plane made it off safely thanks to the actions of the planes pilot Chesley "Sully" Sullenburger and the FDNY John D. McKean which arrived on scene.
The Miracle on the Hudson became such a famous event that years later it would inspire a movie. The movie was titled "Sully" and it would be released in 2016, with Tom Hanks playing the lead role of Mr. Sullenburger.
FDNY John D. Mckean's Current Status
A year after the Miracle on the Hudson event, the John D. McKean was officially decommissioned. Since then the boat has been preserved and has taken up a second career as an educational tool.
In 2016 the John D. Mckean was donated to the Fireboat McKean Preservation Project, Inc. where it works essentially as a museum ship where it educates those that visit about its history and the numerous events it was a part of. Just earlier this year, the John D. McKean was awarded the honor of being added to the National Register of Historic Places.
Currently, the boat is located and docked right in Stony Point, New York. Specifically, it is right behind the Panco Petroleum Co. As of April 2023, the vessel was closed to the public and no further updates have been given on its status. Plans did exist for the vessel to move to Tarrytown but evidently did not occur.
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Though it is currently out of commision, a plan does exist for the John D. McKean. Ed Taylor, one of the many individuals working to preserve the ship stated that once proper maintenance and repairs are finished, the plan is to have the ship "back up and running in the water" and from there be able to "bring school kids and visitors on for tours to continue educating others about the boat’s history".
For more information on the FDNY John D. McKean, follow this link here