- Deirdre Taylor was saved from a 1983 fire in New York and she has always wanted to meet her savior even after many years.
- When the COVID-19 pandemic broke out in the U.S. she decided to serve as a nurse in New York City to give back.
- That’s when she found again the man who gave her the second chance at life.
For a New York firefighter, it may have been “just another day at the office.” But he soon learned that after the incident that happened 37 years ago, when he saved a 4-year-old girl from an apartment on fire, the difference he made was huge.
After she was saved from the fire in 1983, Deirdre Taylor and her family left New York hoping to totally move on from the tragedy. She has always been hoping to meet her rescuer. However, decades passed, her hope of meeting him had become smaller.
She did try her luck to find him online but to no avail.
“I didn’t know if he was still alive, particularly after Sept. 11. Part of me thought I waited too long to track him down,” Deirdre told the New York Daily News.
Now, Dierdre works as a nurse, and is married. She and her own family are living in Virginia. When the pandemic broke out, she decided to go to New York City, to ‘pay it forward’ and save lives.
With that, she was able to finally find the man who was responsible why she’s still alive—Eugene Pugliese, Jr.
She brought with her a newspaper clipping that bore the news about the 1983 fire with a photo of a girl in the arms of Eugene, from Ladder Company 20. The headline is written as: ‘Fireman braves flames, rescues SoHo 4-yr.-old’.
Two weeks ago, Dierdre was working her evening shift when some firefighters visited to give thanks to the healthcare workers. She saw this as a chance and inquired about the man in the newspaper.
To which one of the first responders replied, “Oh, Gene. I know Gene. I’ve got his number in my phone.” After an hour, Dierdre received a call from Gene and she learned he too had never forgotten about her.
“You’ve been on my wall for 25 years,” he told her.
Gene, now 75, can still remember vividly what happened that day. “I didn’t even have gear on. I had a helmet and an axe,” he said. After saving her mother, she begged him to save her baby too. A few minutes later, he found Deirdre and brought her to safety.
Both have kept in contact and although Deirdre has been always busy saving lives, they promised to see each other and catch up soon when everything has settled down.
“I always knew I came close to losing my life that day,” Deirdre told CNN. “Without him, I wouldn’t be here. I had a second chance at life, thanks to him.”
Source: Good News Network