Watch CBS News

Family Mourns Philadelphia Firefighter Killed In The Line Of Duty

By Justin Finch

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Loved ones of Joyce Craig told Eyewitness News the fallen firefighter had a passion for her job.

Hours after her death, Craig's aunt and cousin visited the scene of her last call, a burned-out West Oak Lane home on the 1600 block of Middleton Street.

"As dangerous as the job is, it didn't matter to her. It's what she wanted to do," said her cousin, Letisha Battle.

The relatives said Craig had a close call about four years ago.

"She had fell through the second floor to the first," Battle explained. "She fell through the hole, and she got burned severely to her legs."

Despite her injuries, her loved ones said she refused her desk duty assignment, and chose to go back to firefighting, which was her passion and how she supported herself, her teen son, and toddler daughter.

"A single mother doing all she can to keep her family safe, and helping other families out," said Claudia King, Craig's aunt. "But that was her life. Firefighting was her life."

Inside Engine 64, where Craig was stationed, her colleagues placed a bouquet of flowers above her locker in her honor.

About 50 people held a vigil in Craig's honor in front of Engine 64 Tuesday night. Neighbors organized the event, and some of her colleagues told the crowd about Craig.

"She continually was outstanding doing everything she could to make sure somebody was saved or property was saved and we miss her," said Lieutenant Benny Hutchins.

Hutchins worked closely with Craig over the past three years at Engine 64.

"She didn't want to let gender get in the way of anything. She wanted to prove that point," Hutchins said.

Must Read Today's Top Stories

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.