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“Thomas Kelly”


555 Fitness Hero WOD

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  • For Time
  • 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps of:
  • Overhead Squats (135/95 lb)
  • 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10 reps of:
  • Bar Facing Burpees

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This Firefighter Hero WOD is dedicated to Thomas Kelly, FDNY, Ladder 15, who was killed on September 11, 2001.

As a 20-year-old apprentice in the steamfitters' union, one of Thomas W. Kelly's first assignments took him to the World Trade Center. It was 1970, and what would become New York City's most prominent landmark was climbing upwards. He was responsible for spraying asbestos to provide heat and insulation on the 40th floor of Tower 1. He wrote his initials and 638, his United Association union local, in the stairwell. Next to it, he wrote "UA forever."

In September 1971, he showed this marking to his future bride when he took Kitty Murphy out on their "first big date." Mr. Kelly completed the circle on Sept. 11, returning to the place where his career began — only this time he was on a rescue mission as a firefighter with Manhattan's Ladder Co. 15. His younger brother, Dennis, 43, exited a Wall Street subway station moments after the first plane struck Tower 1. Already, a steady stream of debris was falling from the sky. After the second strike, he immediately made his way to his brother's firehouse. He was told by Firefighters Arthur Barry and Eric Olsen that Mr. Kelly was already on his way to the scene.

After wishing his brother's comrades "Godspeed," Dennis Kelly boarded the Staten Island Ferry, knowing his brother was in the inferno that was blazing behind him. From St. George, he ran the 1½ miles to his brother's Livingston house, where the family was already keeping a vigil.
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