Local News

N.C. Salutes N.Y. Firefighters At Local Parade

Posted December 9, 2001

— Some hometown heroes helped a North Carolina town get into the holiday spirit on Saturday. Two New York City firefighters were the guests of honor at Wallace's annual holiday parade.

The mood this year was definitley more patriotic as firefighters Richard Picciotto and Jerry Riley made their way through downtown on the back of a fire truck.

Picciotto and Riley took time out of the celebration to talk about September 11 and about getting trapped under the rubble as they were trying to rescue their fellow firefighters.

"It took the South Tower 10 seconds to come down. It took the North Tower, the one I was in, eight seconds to come down," said Picciotto. "I knew I had 110 stories on top of me. Even though we were alive, I didn't think we were going to get out alive, but we did."

The deputy fire chief in Wallace helped make it possible for the firefighters to make the trip.

After the parade, many locals just wanted to shake their hands and say thank you.

The experience was the community's way of making the big city firefighters feel at home in a small town.

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