Families of First Responders Lost or Injured in Line of Duty Gather at 21st Annual First Responders Children’s Foundation Thanksgiving Day Parade Breakfast

Mayor Adams; NYPD Commissioner Sewell; PAPD Superintendent Cetnar; DEA Special Agent in Charge Tarentino; Dignitaries at 1,500 Person Bryant Park Event 
Former FDNY Commissioner Nigro Honored for Extraordinary Service.

(New York, NY – Nov. 24) – First Responders Children’s Foundation, the national nonprofit organization that provides financial relief to first responder families in need, especially the families of first responders injured or killed in the line of duty, held its 21st Annual Thanksgiving Day Parade Breakfast on Thanksgiving morning at the Bryant Park Grill in Manhattan. 

Video of this event is available here

More than 1,500 people, including children and families of first responders lost or injured in the line of duty from New York and New Jersey, attended the breakfast, along with Mayor Eric Adams; FDNY Assistant Chief Kevin Brennan; NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell; PAPD Superintendent Edward Cetnar; DEA Special Agent in Charge Frank A. Tarentino III, and other dignitaries. Former NYPD Commissioner Daniel Nigro received a special award for his years of service to the City of New York at the event. 

Following the breakfast, attendees were provided with exclusive front-row views of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade parade as it passed along Sixth Avenue between 40th and 42nd Streets. The event has become an annual tradition for line-of-duty families to support each other during the holiday season. FRCF’s first Thanksgiving Day Breakfast was held in November 2001, following the aftermath of 9/11 to help heal the spirits of first responder families. More than 21,000 children and relatives of first responders have attended the breakfast over the years, which is free of charge thanks to corporate and individual donors. 

“For the last 21 years this breakfast has been a gathering place for remembrance and reflection,” said First Responders Children’s Foundation President and CEO Jillian Crane. “We come together to grieve but also to honor the memories of these fallen heroes.  We have seen some of these children of first responders grow up to follow in their parent’s footsteps and others follow a different path, but we hope that we have played a part in helping these children reach their full potential through our many programs supporting first responder families.  On this Thanksgiving morning we reaffirm our promise to these families and give thanks to all  first responders around the country for their selfless service.” 

“We are pleased to partner with First Responders Children’s Foundation to provide CSX Pride in Service scholarships and other financial support for children and families,” said Bryan Tucker, vice president of corporate communications at CSX. “CSX is deeply committed to serving its customers, their communities, and those who work to protect both every day of the year. We are especially proud to join this annual breakfast, where we can help salute not only first responders, but the families who stand behind them.” 

The CSX Pride in Service scholarships have been awarded to 192 students attending colleges and universities across the nation. Many of the students are pursuing careers that will allow them to give back to their communities. Also featured at the breakfast were first responder legal advocate Matthew McCauley OF Turken, Heath and McCauley, LLP and Universal Music Group Nashville Senior Vice President Dawn Gates. 

“We are proud to partner with First Responders Children’s Foundation to support this annual event that puts a smile on the faces of the children so many First Responders and, in turn, the rest of their family watching on,” said Matthew McCauley, a 9/11 advocate and principal partner with Turken, Heath & McCauley, LLP, a law firm that focuses extensively on obtaining benefits for 9/11. For anyone who has ever started their day in a locker room putting on a bullet proof vest, turnout gear or a stethoscope, know that First Responders Children’s Foundation is there for your family. Happy Thanksgiving and Stay Safe!”

The 21st Annual FRCF Thanksgiving Day Parade Breakfast was funded in part by the generous support of sponsors including Diamond Sponsors: CSX and Turken, Heath & McCauley; Platinum Sponsors: Louis Vuitton and Technical Arts Group; Gold Sponsors:  JP Morgan Chase, Carol and Eugene Cheng, Marylin and James Simons, Jacqueline Rosinsky, Eve Gerber, and Colgate-Palmolive, and Silver Sponsors: Fred Leonardo, Thomas and Ann Marie Flood, Robert Cagnazzi, and New Mark Group.


First Responders Children’s Foundation is a national foundation that provides programs and resources that address the specific needs of children of first responders. The Foundation focuses on critical areas, including scholarships, financial assistance grants; bereavement assistance, mental health counseling for children; and Community Engagement. FRCF was founded over 21 years ago in response to 9/11 when 800 children lost a first responder parent. FRCF also supports first responder families enduring significant financial hardship due to tragic circumstances, including injury in the line of duty.

Additional information about FRCF can be found at www.1stRCF.org and on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram @1strcf.

Bill O’Reilly

Next / Previous