John Vigiano Sr., a former Marine and decorated retired FDNY captain whose first responder sons lost their lives on 9/11, died Sunday after a battle with cancer, according to a family friend. He was 79.
Vigiano joined the FDNY ranks in 1962. He served as a firefighter in Ladder Co. 103, a lieutenant in Rescue Co. 2 and as captain of Ladder Co. 176. Vigiano retired from the Fire Department in 1998 with 36 years of service, all in Brooklyn.
He was instrumental in developing a number of operational procedures for FDNY ladder and rescue companies.
Vigiano took great pride in the fact that his sons followed him into lives of service. John Jr. was a firefighter. Joseph was a police detective. The Vigiano brothers were killed while working to save others in the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center.
“That whole family is built to serve, whether the FDNY or NYPD,” said John Feal, a 9/11 first responder and friend of the family who confirmed Vigiano’s death to the Daily News.
“There’s a handful of people that everybody in the 9/11 community knows and Vigiano was one of them. He’s royalty in the 9/11 community.”
In 1984, Vigiano battled throat cancer.
The FDNY didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.