A veteran city EMT has succumbed to the coronavirus, becoming the 12th FDNY hero claimed by the pandemic, officials announced Wednesday.
Evelyn Ford, a member of the Emergency Medical Dispatch unit with 27 years of service to her name, died late Tuesday. She was 58.
“Very, very sad that just now, as we finally get to turn the corner — the vaccine has finally arrived — we lose a good woman who served us so well for so long,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio during a morning press briefing. “Our hearts go out to her family [and] her children.”
Ford, a resident of Long Island, is survived by her four children, the FDNY wrote in a social-media tribute.
As a citywide dispatcher, Ford helped coordinate from afar responses to major emergencies across the five boroughs, including large fires and mass casualty incidents.
“For nearly three decades, EMT Ford was a member of the busiest and best Emergency Medical Service in the world,” said FDNY Commissioner Dan Nigro in a statement. “She was a professional medical provider who responded to help those in need on countless calls, and she was a calm voice during major emergencies ensuring New Yorkers received the urgent care they needed.
“Ford was a highly respected member of EMD and a mentor to hundreds of her fellow EMTs,” the department social-media post added.
She previously served as an EMT out of Fort Greene, Brooklyn.
Speaking further during the same press briefing as de Blasio, Nigro noted the tragedy of losing a 12th department member to COVID-19 just hours before the FDNY launched its rollout of the vaccine to its EMTs.
“What was going to be one of the few uplifting that we’ve had this year … was saddened by the knowledge that Ms. Ford passed last night of COVID,” said Nigro. “It really points to how important the vaccinations are to our members.”