|"Of all my parents' friends, the only one happy going
to work was a member of 120 Truck. I was only 16 then, but that
is when I decided I wanted to be a fireman," said Peter
J. Ganci, Jr., Chief of Department.
Obviously, a wise decision--one that was prodigious for Chief
Ganci, as well as the FDNY. As Chief of Department, Chief
Ganci was responsible for both Fire and EMS Operations, Training
and Fire Prevention and also was required to represent uniformed
members of the Department at ceremonial functions.
It is no secret that firefighters enjoy their time in the
firehouse. It's where the action is, where they want to be.
Headquarters is the antithesis of this and many balk when
assigned there. Chief Ganci took a different tack when called
upon. Although he, too, loved the action of the field, he
viewed his assignment at Headquarters as "giving back
to the FDNY." In Chief Ganci's opinion, "Staff Chiefs
have the opportunity to make things better for the firefighters
coming after us."
At Headquarters, "we have the opportunity to make an
impact. I'm very proud of the Incident Safety Officers Program
(formulated in conjunction with former UFOA President Deputy
Chief Artie Parrinello). I could not have accomplished this
in the field; here, it's a different story."
Accustomed to action, working at Headquarters was a difficult
adjustment for the Chief. "It seems that I spend an excessive
amount of time trying to resolve one conflict or another.
Most of the issues I face daily are problems of some sort.
It doesn't leave much time to acknowledge the good our guys
do every day," said Chief Ganci. "One of the most
difficult aspects of my job is striking a balance between
an obligation to the public and our members. I continually
strive to do the right thing by both."
How will Chief Ganci be remembered? He hopes as "a good
fireman...a good Chief." The name Ganci will continue
to be familiar for many years to come, however, as Peter,
III, now is a firefighter, assigned to Ladder 111.