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City Will Fight Court's Decision to List Retired Firefighter Alongside Colleagues on 9/11 Memorial

By DNAinfo Staff on July 27, 2010 7:00pm

The model shows the waterfalls that will pour into the footprints of the original Twin Towers.
The model shows the waterfalls that will pour into the footprints of the original Twin Towers.
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By Jill Colvin

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MIDTOWN — The city will appeal a court decision that would allow a firefighter retired at the time of the World Trade Center attacks to be included on the National 9/11 Memorial alongside former colleagues, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Tuesday.

Retired Capt. James Corrigan was killed on September 11, 2001, while working privately as a Fire and Life Safety Coordinator for the World Trade Center. According to FDNY rules, the fact that Corrigan was retired from the FDNY at the time of the attacks makes him ineligible for inclusion in the department's section of the National September 11 Memorial and Museum at Ground Zero.

But Corrigan's widow took the decision to court, arguing that her husband acted as a firefighter that day, working with and under the command of the FDNY.

A judge sided with the family in a decision released Monday, saying that "there is simply no rational basis for the FDNY’s position."

Debate has been brewing for years over which names should be included as part of the memorial, as well as how to group them and whether to include companies, ranks and ages.

Bloomberg acknowledged Tuesday that re-opening the debate could be a can of worms.

"You’re never going to make everybody happy," he said, adding that if people keep fighting about issues like these, "it will never get done."

But it appears that for some reason, this is one fight the mayor is willing to go the distance on.

"We’ll fight this in court," Bloomberg threatened at a press conference on Tuesday.

When asked if he thinks they have a chance of winning an appeal, Jason Post, a spokesman for the mayor, said, "We lost [this time]. I don't have a crystal ball."