In Memory of Sergeant Jeffrey M. Cicora
On Saturday, August 10, 2019, Sergeant Jeffrey M. Cicora, badge number 4470, died due to cancer caused by his work on the search and recovery efforts following the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Nearly eighteen years later, the attack on the US is still claiming lives. Sergeant Cicora is one of several officers who have died in the last 30 days.
Sergeant Cicora, age 54, had served the state of New York for over 24 years. He was a proud member of the New York State Police. Many officers from the surrounding area answered the call to help when the terrorist attacks occurred. Unfortunately, officers’ and first responders’ lives are still being lost to the incident.
On September 11, 2001, the US faced the idea that its shores were not untouchable. Working with the al Qaeda network, hijackers managed to hijack four commercial airplanes and use them as weapons against US targets. The first two planes struck the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, bringing down the buildings and killing many US citizens. The third plane was aimed to hit the US Pentagon in an attempt to disrupt military readiness. The fourth airplane hijacked had passengers that chose to fight back. Their heroism saved many lives, but they lost their own when the plane went down in a field near Shanksville, Pennsylvania.
The news shocked Americans and shattered the lives of those families who were directly impacted by the attacks. Firefighters, EMTs, and law enforcement ran into buildings to save lives, knowing they would likely not make it out themselves. On the morning of September 11, 2001, a total of seventy-two officers lost their lives. The total loss from the incident is still growing. There were 2,977 lives lost that day. In addition, the number of deaths is increasing from those exposed to chemicals and debris in the air. The area was highly contaminated, and many are still suffering from illnesses brought on by their proximity to ground zero.
New York State Police, New York
The New York State Police (NYSP) is the primary state police force for New York. The department employs more than 5,000 sworn state troopers and approximately 715 civilian administrative employees. The New York State Executive Department oversees the NYSP.
Early in the twentieth century, New York initiated its State Police Force in 1917. It was a result of the 1913 murder of Sam Howell. Unfortunately, the local police failed to do their duty and arrest the man named for the crime by Sam Howell on his deathbed.
Many states in the US developed state police forces in this period. The automobile was no longer a luxury, and due to mass manufacturing, there was a significant increase in the number of cars on the roads.
Today, the NYSP covers a jurisdiction of 54,556 square miles and provides law enforcement services to more than 19.4 million residents.
Sergeant Jeffrey M. Cicora leaves behind his wife and son. His family will join others who have lost someone directly due to the September 11 attacks. Cicora’s name will be entered with the names of the fallen. His family may find strength in visiting the memorial site.
Residents, neighbors, friends, and area law enforcement all gathered to share their goodbyes to Sgt. Cicora. Full honors were given to the ceremony to demonstrate the significance of Cicora’s sacrifice on behalf of others.
Resident and friend Casey Donnolly posted his sorrow on Facebook. “Completely heartbroken, Officer Jeffrey M Cicora Rest In Peace. You’re a true hero and will always be remembered as one. A great person all around, most could only wish to be half the person you were. God Speed Brother. It was an honor to be part of the procession bringing you back from Clayton. You have left an impact on everyone you’ve encountered, and everyone is here to support you and your family. Rest Easy, Jeff.”
Friend George Kropf shared his goodbyes online. “On Aug 10, 2019, Sgt Jeffrey Cicora finally lost his multi-year battle with cancer contracted after spending many months on “the pile” after 911. Jeff was a canine handler and, as such, was deployed there almost continuously for many months. He was a coworker, a trooper’s trooper, and most importantly, a friend. I was privileged to spend a little time with him these last few months when he knew the race was coming to an end. He was tired. He touched many lives, and I will miss him. Until I see you again, Jeff, RIP, you hurt no more.”