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Firefighters Say Goodbye to Their 9/11 'Guardian Angel'

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) - Firefighters say their final goodbye to a Brooklyn woman who they saved on 9/11.

Firefighters of Ladder 6 in Chinatown called Josephine Harris, 69, their guardian angel.

"If she wasn't there, we would have been a little faster and we would not have made it," said Deputy Fire Chief Jay Jonas.


WCBS 880 Marla Diamond reports on a funeral that touched the hearts of Ladder 6

WCBS 880's Marla Diamond reports Jonas helped carry Harris' coffin into St. Joseph's Church nearly a decade after he carried her on his shoulders as the North Tower collapsed around them.

"You know, we felt it was an honor to do this for her and we feel very happy that she is in God's hands," said Jonas.

Port Authority Lieutenant David Lynn helped carry a weary Harris to safety on 9/11, now he helped carry her coffin.

Firefighters Carry Coffin of Josephine Harris (Photo: Marla Diamond/WCBS 880)
Firefighters Carry Coffin of Josephine Harris (Photo: Marla Diamond/WCBS 880)

"My wife said it best, you could look at it this way. Because it was such a miracle, you know... it was like ten more years of her life was added on," said Lynn.

Former Mayor Rudy Giuliani attended the funeral mass celebrated by Cardinal Ameridas Edward Egan who thanked the firefighters for their bravery on 9/11.

"It's wonderful to see the fire department and Josephine come together, cause they did save each other. And it gives you a sense September 11th was the worst day in history and the best day in history," said Giuliani.

Harris died of a heart attack on January 12, but her body was kept in the morgue until Peter DeLucca, the owner of the Greenwich Village Funeral Home, offered to pick up the entire cost of her funeral.

"I wanted to the firefighters to have an opportunity to honor her one last time," said DeLucca.

DeLucca had the interior of the coffin custom embroidered with the image of a firefighter walking hand-in-hand with an angel.

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