The city’s EMS corps on Monday hailed the off-duty transit officer who helped apprehend the man suspected of killing EMT Yadira Arroyo.
MTA Police Officer Daniel McDade, surrounded by Arroyo’s colleagues and family at her Bronx EMS station, was praised for his quick-thinking and selfless actions.
“One month ago, our FDNY family lost a remarkable woman in a senseless crime,” said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro. “And the members here lost someone who was important to this station.”
Arroyo, 44, an EMT with 14 years on the job, was a beloved fixture at the “Tin House,” the nickname for her base, EMS Station 26 in Morrisania.
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A memorial to the fallen first responder, adorned with Puerto Rican flags, Pepsi cans and candles, graces the back of the station where EMS union head Israel Miranda showered McDade with praise.
“Today makes a little over a month that our sister was taken from us by a criminal who obviously shouldn’t have been in the streets,” he said. “But today we’re here to honor a great man. He is a true hero.”
Arroyo, a mother of five boys, was responding to a routine call with her partner on March 16 when chaos erupted on White Plains Road.
A schizophrenic man with a 31-arrest rap sheet stole Arroyo’s ambulance — and then ran her over twice with the FDNY vehicle, authorities said.
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McDade was taking a detour on his way to an overtime shift at Grand Central Terminal when he saw the terror unfold. The cop and a pair of bystanders jumped into action, subduing 25-year-old Jose Gonzalez — the man suspected of being behind the wheel.
McDade humbly accepted the honors, but said Arroyo was the true hero.
“It’s sad. It’s honorable, but the true honor and heroism goes to Yari,” he said. “I’m here for her.”
The MTA K-9 cop from Long Island said he has only one regret — not getting a chance to meet Arroyo.
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The fallen EMT’s aunt, Ali Acevedo-Hernandez, thanked McDade for his courage.
“On behalf of our family, thank you. It’s a very small phrase compared to the immense gratitude that we feel for your courageous act,” Acevedo-Hernandez said. “You’re heroic in our hearts and in our eyes.”
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