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Christopher J. Prescott Medal

December 12, 1998, 1330 hours
Flushing and Bushwick Avenues, Brooklyn


Paramedic: Daniel Fink

Daniel Fink was appointed in February 1996. Assigned to EMS Battalion 35. Previously a member of the Haz-Tac Unit. Other family member in the FDNY is cousin, Battalion Chief John Linkletter. Resides in Coram, Long Island, with wife, Lori, and children, Danielle, 17, and Stephen, 13.

Daniel Fink


Returning from a meeting at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office, Paramedic Daniel Fink joined his partner and headed for their assigned response area. As they came to Flushing and Bushwick Avenues, the sight of a fire greeted them. Flames were coming out of the ground-floor windows of a three-story residence. While his partner radioed for assistance, Paramedic Fink tried to enter the burning building, but was turned away by a heavy fire condition. When he stepped back to gaze at the building, he noticed a small child--frozen in a state of obvious panic--standing in the window of the second floor. Paramedic Fink, knowing that there was no way he was going to leave the child to die, returned to the front door. As a former member of the Coram Volunteer Fire Department, Paramedic Fink’s training came back to him, as he immediately dropped to his knees and entered the heavy smoke. Although he had no protective clothing, he attempted to make his way up to the second floor. Through the low visibility, he spied the door to the child’s apartment, but could not proceed because the fire had blocked his access. Paramedic Fink quickly retreated from the burning structure and ran to an adjacent building--a one-story garage housing an auto repair facility. Using the mechanism of the roll-up door, Paramedic Fink shimmied up to the roof and made his way to the kitchen window. There, he not only removed the child, but also her older sister, who had come to the window, screaming for help. After a neighbor provided a ladder, the child was lowered from the garage to the street. However, Paramedic Fink still had more work to do: the older sister had suffered a severe asthma attack and required immediate attention. Paramedic Fink moved the young woman to the far side of the garage roof and, using the equipment from a medical bag provided by an engine company that had arrived on the scene, successfully treated his patient. After stabilizing her, she was lowered to the street. Because he acted without concern for his own safety, demonstrated courage, as well as resourcefulness and placed himself at great personal risk to save the lives of two civilians, Paramedic Daniel Fink proudly is awarded the Christopher J. Prescott Medal for 1998.--BDG

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