PEEKSKILL, N.Y. -- The City of Peekskill is mourning 48-year-old firefighter Kevin Bristol, who died on Monday after suffering a heart attack.
Bristol, a career firefighter with the department, worked the night shift on Monday, March 2, responding to a kitchen fire at 5:57 a.m, according to the fire department. He went off shift at 7 a.m. and his wife found him unresponsive at 2 p.m. He was taken to Hudson Valley Hospital Center in Cortlandt, where he was pronounced dead.
A wake for Bristol will be held Wednesday, March 5 from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Nardone Funeral Home according to LoHud. A full dress funeral will be held at Assumption Church at 10 a.m. according to John Testa, former mayor and county legislator.
Mayor Frank Catalina called Bristol's death an "unspeakable tragedy."
"I went to high school with his brother Pat," Catalina, who was at the hospital with Bristol, said. "We are just shocked. Everyone knew Kevin. He was bigger than life, but had a very quiet presence. He was very knowledgeable."
Catalina said he once had the privilege of watching Bristol fight a fire said.
"He was in complete control," Catalina said. "He was someone everyone looked up to. He did his job."
Bristol's death is a tremendous loss for the city, Catalina said.
"This is also a very personal loss," Catalina said. "His family will suffer."
Peekskill's firefighters, which include career and volunteer, are the city's first responders.
"They are trained paramedics, they have saved many lives," Catalina said. "We couldn't function without them."
The Bristol family is well known in Peekskill for its volunteerism.
"Kevin has a tremendous legacy," Catalina said. "He lived a great life. This is a sad time."
Catalina said he spoke to firefighter Jim Meany, who said Bristol was his best friend.
"I lived with this guy for 20 years," Meany told Catalina. "We worked the same shifts. We trained together. We had each other's backs."
Testa said Bristol was all about Peekskill.
"He was very devoted to the city," Testa said. "He cared very much about the community. 'Peekskill First' was his motto. This is a terrible tragedy."
Testa said Bristol was passionate about being a firefighter.
"The community will miss his dedication," Testa said.