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FDNY to promote LI father, son in historic ceremony

For the first time in history, father and

For the first time in history, father and son members of the FDNY are being promoted on the same day. Deputy Chief John Mooney, left, and his son, firefighter Shane Mooney will receive their promotions on Wednesday. (Dec. 29, 2009) Credit: Newsday / John Paraskevas

John Mooney joined the New York City Fire Department in 1978 - the same year his son Shane was born.

Wednesday, the two will share a different kind of bond at a ceremony in which - for the first time in the department's 145-year history - father and son will be promoted at the same time.

John Mooney, a deputy chief from Williston Park, and firefighter Shane Mooney of North Massapequa will be honored along with 21 fellow firefighters at the FDNY Fire Academy on Randalls Island.

John Mooney, 56, will be promoted to deputy assistant chief of the academy while Shane Mooney will become a lieutenant.

Shane Mooney, 31, with Ladder 26 in Harlem for the eight years he's been a firefighter, said the job is "a little kid's dream. Every boy wants to be a cop or a fireman.

"To have one of your hero figures actually be one . . . to follow in his footsteps - it's all I ever knew, it's all I ever wanted to know."

His brother Scott, 29, is a firefighter at Truck 58 in the Bronx. "It's probably in his blood," John Mooney said.

Fire officials said there are hundreds of father and son firefighters in the department but none that have received promotions at the same time.

The Mooneys received calls about their promotions within minutes of each other last Wednesday.

"The chief of personnel called me; he was going down the list of everybody who was getting promoted," said John Mooney. "As soon as I got off the phone, I called Shane and he said, 'Yep, he just called me, Dad.' "

John Mooney, who runs the fire academy, started his fire career at Engine 221 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and over the years has served in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Harlem, Washington Heights and East New York. Two years ago, he became chief deputy at Fort Totten. On Nov. 2, he went to the academy.

Shane Mooney joined the department in October 2001, part of the first probationary class after the Sept. 11 terror attacks. He followed in the footsteps of his father, grandfather and uncle.

Wednesday's ceremony will mean a lot to his family and comes just one day after the second birthday of his son John, his father's namesake.

"With the exception of my brother," he said, "there's no one I would rather share a promotion with. . . . The only thing better would be if it was the three of us."

His mother, Jill, says she is thrilled about the honors being bestowed on her family. "I think they're wonderful and I'm just very, very proud. What more can I say?"

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