Chief Raymond Downey

Being a hero was nothing new to New York Fire Department Chief Raymond Downey. The well-respected leader had risen through the ranks to earn the title of Chief of Special Operations and led task forces that responded to the Oklahoma City bombing, Hurricane Marilyn and the Atlanta Olympics. In addition, he was a team leader in response to Hurricanes Hugo, Andres, Fran, and Opal.

Downey was a panel member of the Gilmore Commission, and a Presidential Committee on Terrorism, which had been assessing domestic response capabilities for terrorism involving weapons of mass destruction.

Author of the book "The Rescue Company", and a series of videos on collapse operations, Downey received the Crystal Apple Award, issued by the Mayor of New York, on July 23, 2001. When the events of Sept. 11 occurred it was no wonder that Downey was among those responding to rescue efforts at the World Trade Center when the buildings collapsed.

Downey was also known as the parent of some very talented wrestling sons; Joe, a former Hofstra University wrestler, and Ray, a former high school state champion and Hofstra wrestler.


Medal of Courage

Our Mission: To honor the sport of wrestling by preserving its history, recognizing extraordinary individual achievements, and inspiring future generations