Partners Buried While Saving Lives
Date: September 21, 2001
by: KIRSTEN DANIS, NY POST
As the World Trade Center burned above him, paramedic Carlos Lillo had tears in his eyes.
His partner asked Lillo if he needed something to shield his eyes from the smoke while he carried people to safety. No, Lillo replied, he was just worried about his wife, who worked for the Port Authority on the 64th floor of the north tower.
But Lillo's wife, Cecilia, remembered what her husband had taught her about emergencies. She doggedly climbed down the dark stairwell, yelling for help, with her arms held aloft to protect her head.
Cecilia made it out. Carlos did not.
Lillo, 37, and Ricardo Quinn, 40, are the only two city EMS paramedics feared killed in the World Trade Center attack. Six other medics and EMTs, who worked directly for hospitals, are also missing.
"He's my hero because I was in there and I did everything he taught me. He gave me the strength to go on," Cecilia said yesterday.
At her office the morning of the attack, Ginny Quinn knew in her gut her husband was at the trade center even though he was supposed to be at their Bayside home.
"He hightailed it over there. I have no doubt about that," Ginny Quinn said.
The morning after the attack, Ginny learned her husband had been in the lobby of the south tower when it collapsed.
"I don't think he was afraid when this happened. I know he was just thinking of other people," Quinn said of her husband of 12 years.
The Quinns met on Jones Beach when their sons began playing together. A gifted artist, Ricardo Quinn's sand sculptures drew crowds of admirers.
Quinn had two sons, Adam, 18, and Kevin, 9, and a stepson, Nick Monaco, 20. The Lillos had gone to Long Island City HS together, but did not begin dating until 1998. They married in April 2000.
"I was in the bombing in '93 also, and we always talked about it," Cecilia said. "I said if I had to, I would jump over people to get out of that building because I knew he'd be there waiting for me outside."
Article courtesy of the New York Post