West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933
Volume 77, Number 22 | Oct. 31 - Nov. 06, 2007


Villager photo by Lorcan Otway

Chief James Savastano

James Savastano, Fire Department battalion chief

Battalion Chief James J. Savastano, commander of the Fourth Battalion, died suddenly of a heart attack on Oct. 9. He was 54. He was off duty and was running when he was stricken, according to a Fire Department spokesperson.

A Brooklyn resident, Savastano was based at the Pitt St. firehouse a.k.a. “Fort Pitt,” home of Engine 5 and Ladder 18, on the Lower East Side by the Williamsburg Bridge.

His career with the New York City Fire Department spanned 29 years. He was assigned to Battalion 4 in November 2001.

On 9/11, he was one of the chiefs directing efforts to battle the raging fire that eventually brought down 7 World Trade Center.

President Bush and Laura Bush visited the Pitt St. firehouse on Sept. 11, 2006, for a memorial service marking the fifth anniversary of the 9/11 attack. After the ceremony Savastano told The Villager how he had discussed jogging with the president, since Savastano was a jogger and he knew the president was, too.

He is survived by his wife, Lorraine; children, Janine, Karen, James and Laura; sisters, Regina Keenan, Patricia Tschacher, Kathleen Woodworth; and brothers, Edward, Roy and Richard.

Savastano’s funeral mass was in Marine Park, Brooklyn, at Good Shepherd Church.

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