After 9/11, Venice Feted Firefighters. The Party Is Still Going

Sep 11, 2019 441

BY: Andrew Cotto

On the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, Daniel Nigro was chief of operations for the New York Fire Department. By the end of the day, after 343 firefighters had died, including Peter J. Ganci Jr., the department chief, he was in charge. Mr. Nigro immediately became a public figure for collective grief.

“We could see from the pictures that he was sad,” said Bepi D’Este, a retired accountant and active civic figure on Burano island in the Venetian Lagoon, who, along with some of his friends, including a well-known restaurateur and the former president of a gondola company, often saw Mr. Nigro in the news. “We thought, let’s invite him here to Venice to have a good time. Maybe we can cheer him up.”

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