NEW YORK FIRE GOSSIP.
AFTER a continuous service of almost thirty-three years, Francis J. Reilly, deputy chief of the fire department of this city, died on June 9 at his home. 686 East One Hundred and Thirty-fifth street. Chief Reilly had been ailing since the great fire in Bleecker street on Election night, 1895, when, with twenty firemen, he was thrown from the sixth to the fifth floor of the Manhattan Savings Institution. At a critical point, when the flames had seized that building, the marble stairs on which he and his men were standing fell with a crash, cutting off all means of escape. Chief Reilly sprang to the nearest window, as the whole structure round him had gone; but, before he could get his body outside, one of the big beams had struck him on the leg, injuring his ankle. A fireman likewise fell upon him and broke two of his ribs. He hung on desperately to the sill until he was rescued. As a result of the excitement to which he was subjected and the injuries which he received on that occasion, heart trouble was developed which in the end caused his death. Up to the time of that fne he had been one of the most robust and rugged members of the fire department. Chief Reilly’s record was conspicuous for his excellence as a simple fireman, a subordinate officer, and a chief. He joined the department on September 27, 1865, when the new establishment was organized, being then twenty-two years of age. In October, 1870, he was made assistant foreman and in July, 1871, foreman. On February 1, 1880, he was appointed battalion chief; on August 4, 1886, second assistant chief of the department; and on May 23. 1889. deputy chief. At the time of his death he was senior of the deputy chiefs. Chief Reilly was the one of the most trusted and efficient officers in the department, popular with the men and respected by all with whom he came in contact. He was brave as a lion in time of danger; strict, but thoroughly impartial in his treatment of his subordinates; punctual and conscientious in the discharge of all his duties; a good citizen; a loving husband and father, whose loss a widow and two children arc left to deplore. His career and bravery in the service of the fire department of New York show that peace has her heroes even as war, and that the victories won by a Dewey or the feats of heroism achieved by a Hobson are not confined to those who fight their country’s battle against foreign foes,but are duplicated week in and week out by the noble men who wear the uniform of the fire department. But,while the achievements of our sailors and soldiers are made (and deservedly) the themes of laudation all over the world and substantial rewards are herpedupon their doers, the equally noble actions constantly performed by the firemen throughout the length and breadth of the land are taken as things of course aud dismissed with a few lines in the columns of a local paper, while the heroes themselves, except in the few instances where there are funds for a medal or some such decoration, go unrewarded by the public. Yet our firemen never grumble; never shrink from the battle when it rages round them; never look for reward or even notice, but take it as a matter of course, a something that is all in the day’s work. Chief Reilly’s was a case in point,and for aught his fellow citizens know about him the good he did in lifetime is ” interred with his bones.” His funeral took place ou Saturday last from St. Jerome’s Roman Catholic church,Alexander avenue and One Hundred and Thirty-seventh streets. It was an imposing function. The body lay in the coffin dressed in full uniform, and was removed to the church on Saturday morning. A solemn high Mass of requiem was sang by Rev. Mr. Tandy assisted by the Rev. Messrs. Flood and Breheney as deacon and subdeacon. The church was crowded and among those present were Fire Commissioner S-tinnell, Chief B>aner,form:rChiih Shay ani Bites, formir Fire Commissioner Henry D. Purroy, Percival E. Nagle,John E. Nagle, Carl Juisen, Superintendent Smith, of the fire department; Dominick O’Reilly, Alderman Lawrence McGrath, Frank P. Dunlap, Patrick F. McKeon and others. At the close of the services in the church a parade was formed,headed by two large trucks carrying a profusion of floral tributes. Following were Battalion Chiefs Ahearn and Cashman, Captains Shaw, Riordan, Donohue, McDonald, McAvoy, and Leonard, and eighty-eight firemen, as escort, under command of Ch ef Gicquel. The colors of the department were draped with black. Sixty carriages with mourners followed. The procession went down One Hundred and Thirty-eighth street to Brook avenue, and up Brook avenue to Westchester avenue, where the escort was dismissed. The burial was in St. Raymond’s cemetery. It was noticed that none of the former fire commissioners thought it worth their while to be present to pay a last mark of respect to a brave and conscientious fireman.—Leave of absence for three months has been granted Supt. Hull, of the New York fire patrol,—Deputy Chief Platt Van Cott is to be retired at his own request. His successor will be Battalion Chief John J. Fanning.—Former Commissioner Anthony Erickhoff has bee 1 appointed examiner of accounts —a new bureau created in the fire department by Fire Commissioner Scannell— with a salary of $2,500 a year. Mr. Eickhoff is over seventy years of age, and is a former assemblyman, coroner, and Congressman. He was also a fire commissioner from 1889 to 1895, serving on the board with Commissioner Scannell.—A number of transfers have recently been made in the department. Among the officers transferred were Battalion Chief William J. Cook from the Fourth to the Fifth battalion, with headquarters on West Ninety-ninth street,and Battalion Chief Peter II. Short,who has taken his place at Attorney street on the lower East Side.The new fireboat Robert A.Van Wyck, engine company No. 66, is now in commission, and is located at her dock at the foot of Grand street, East River, where the Havemeyer used to lie, in readiness to respond to alarms of fire anywhere along the river front. The boat is in charge of Capt. T. F. Connolly, formerly of the Havemeyer. The fireboat Havemeyer, of which Foreman McCutchen is in charge, is stationed at the foot of East Ninety-fourth street. A new engine company has also gone into service. It is No. 65, in charge of Foreman R. S. Morris, formerly of engine No. 34, whose assistant is J. F. Higgins. It has its quarters in West Forty-third street. Picked men form the crews of each company.