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9/11 first responder stabbed to death in ‘barbaric’ attack in Queens

This undated photo provided by the Fire Department of New York shows FDNY EMS Lt. Alison Russo-Elling. Russo-Elling was fatally stabbed in an apparently random attack, Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022, in the Queens borough of New York. (Courtesy of FDNY via AP)

A 25-year veteran of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY), who served as a first responder at the World Trade Center on 9/11, was fatally stabbed on Thursday while on duty.

Emergency Medical Services Lt. Alison Russo-Elling, 61, was stabbed multiple times in what acting Fire Commissioner Laura Kavanagh described as a “barbaric and completely unprovoked attack.” 

Russo-Elling was brought to Mount Sinai Hospital in Queens, where she later died from her injuries. Police said a 34-year-old man has been apprehended as a suspect.

“Members of EMS serve only to help and save other people’s lives,” Kavanaugh said at a press briefing on Thursday. “To be attacked and killed in the course of helping others is both heartbreaking and enraging for our department in ways I cannot describe.”

“Our hearts go out to the family, colleagues and the City of New York,” Mayor Eric Adams (D) said at the briefing. “We lost one of our heroes.”

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) on Thursday night ordered flags to be flown at half-staff in honor of Russo-Elling.

“We mourn the loss of Lt. Alison Russo-Elling, who was killed in Queens today,” Hochul wrote on Twitter. “A World Trade Center first responder with over two decades of service with the @FDNY, Lt. Russo-Elling was a true hero.”

Tags Alison Russo-Elling EMS Eric Adams kathy hochul Kathy Hochul Laura Kavanaugh New York City Fire Department queens

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