As flags at municipal facilities across Nassau County continued to fly at half-staff in his honor, the Island Park Fire Department on Tuesday announced funeral arrangements for fallen firefighter Michael Fischer, who died of an apparent heart attack Sunday following a training exercise.
Fischer, 38, was born and raised in Island Park, graduated West Hempstead High School, and served with the department almost 10 years, following in the footsteps of his maternal grandfather — who'd been an Island Park firefighter — as he rose to the ranks of lieutenant and captain.
He worked for the Nassau County Department of Public Works and, following his death, County Executive Bruce Blakeman ordered flags at all county facilities flown at half-staff through Thursday.
Officials said Fischer had helped train new recruits Sunday morning, then rode on a department engine to Peter's Clam Bar on Long Beach Road, where firefighters were holding a fundraiser for the family of an Oceanside fire official whose infant son had been diagnosed with a rare cancer. Minutes after arriving at the event, former Island Park Fire Department Chief Anthony D'Esposito said Fischer went into cardiac arrest and died, despite the best efforts of firefighters and paramedics at the fundraiser.
Fischer is survived by two sisters.
Officials said the wake will be Wednesday, 4-8 p.m., at the Christopher T. Jordan Funeral Home at 302 Long Beach Rd. in Island Park.
A funeral Mass will be celebrated at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church on Long Beach Road in Island Park on Thursday, 9:15 a.m., followed by burial at Greenfield Cemetery in Uniondale.
The Town of Hempstead has waived fees for Fischer's burial at Greenfield Cemetery.
"Fisch was probably one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet," former department chief and current Island Park village trustee Robert Tice said Monday. "You couldn't ask for a better person."