John P. Bergin: Finding a New
holidays, John P. Bergin wasn't just the turkey carver.
He prepared the entire turkey. "He was good old Martha
Stewart with the cheesecloth," his wife, Madeline, said.
"We're going to starve without him."
Mr. Bergin, 39, honed his cooking while working as a
firefighter, first with the No. 6 truck in Manhattan and
more recently with Rescue Company 5. At home on Staten
Island he took up other domestic chores. He changed
diapers for three children and coached their teams. With
his co-workers' help, he put a swimming pool in the
backyard; beside it stood a beer tap, his prized
possession. Most recently, he and a partner had bought a
local bar, the Grand City Tavern. On Sept. 11,
renovations were two weeks away from completion.
"They did everything together," Mrs. Bergin said of
her husband and the other firefighters. Now, she and 10
other wives of men from his firehouse who were lost in
the attack are carrying on the tradition, albeit more
somberly. "We just started counseling together," she
said. "We've become very close. How the guys shared a
bond &emdash; now we share a bond."