John D'Allara: Rescuing and
D'Allara, a member of the New York Police Department's
emergency service office in Harlem, was a rescue
specialist on the scene at the World Trade Center on
Sept. 11. During his 14 years on the job, he pried,
cajoled or otherwise extracted a broad array of life
forms from danger, dealing with a menagerie of exotic
animals. Spider monkeys. Bats. Squirrels. One time, he
saved an iguana. But he helped plenty of people, too.
"One time, we had a kid trapped in an elevator, with
his head trapped between a beam and the elevator," said
Sgt. Lee Hom, who worked with Officer D'Allara for five
years in the late 1980's and early 90's. "He kept the kid
calm, and we got him out."
A physical education teacher before he joined the
Police Department, Officer D'Allara, 47, who lived with
his wife and two sons, Johnny, 7, and Nicholas, 3, in
Rockland County, intended to go back to teaching. "He
loved the Police Department," said his brother, Dan. "But
he was counting his paychecks to retirement."