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“Robert McPadden”


555 Fitness Hero WOD

3.2K 54
  • 4 Rounds for Time
  • 7 Snatches (135/95 lb)
  • 14 Burpees
  • 21 Wall Ball Shots (20/14 lb)
  • 500 meter Row

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namesake photo

Background: This Firefighter Hero WOD is dedicated to Robert McPadden, FDNY, Engine 23, who was killed on September 11, 2001.

Robert McPadden had a Master’s degree in Criminal Justice but he wanted to be a firefighter. His late father Michael McFadden was a firefighter with the FDNY, retiring after 35 years as a Lieutenant.

Bob was the youngest of five children and the family entertainer. He was a great baseball and basketball player, but he also enjoyed skateboarding with his friends, playing guitar and making mixed tapes of his favorite songs. He met his wife Kate in 1994, and they married four years later.

In November 1999, Bob finally got the call to join the FDNY, and he loved the job from day one. Quiet at first, Bob was the “perfect probie.” The first few tours he didn’t say much and was quick to help out with chores around the house. He ate his meals at lightening speed so he could be the first one done and collect everyone else’s dishes.

As a new member of the crew he happily peeled potatoes, washed dishes and led schoolchildren around Engine Company 23 in Manhattan, saying: “Hi! I’m Fireman Bob!”

Bob slowly opened up and began to joke with the guys, allowing his true personality and sharp wit to come out. Bob loved everything about the job – learning the science of fighting fires, preparing and sharing meals, playing practical jokes, and most of all the late night conversations. Bob always enjoyed a good debate. He was a great conversationalist and a walking encyclopedia of trivia, impressing everyone by knowing all the answers to “Jeopardy!”

On Sept. 11, Bob and his station colleagues were 2 of the first units to arrive on the scene. They were caught when the South tower collapsed. No one in his family had heard from him all day, before or after the attacks. The next morning, Bob’s brother, Michael, a police officer, asked a fellow cop to drive him to the city to confront Ground Zero. He didn’t want to give up hope, but also knew that it was time to come to terms with what had really happened. Standing in front of Ground Zero, the enormity of it all hit him, and he knew.

via 555 Fitness (@555fitness)

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