Thankful Thursday: Boston Firefighter James M. Gibbons (1949-1981)

James M. Gibbons Medal of Valor. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/citation1981gibbons.jpg

James M. Gibbons Medal of Valor. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/citation1981gibbons.jpg

 

This week the city of Boston mourns and honors Boston firefighters Lt. Edward J. Walsh Jr., 43, and Michael R. Kennedy, 33, who were trapped in a fire in a brownstone at 298 Beacon Street in the Back Bay. The era of the internet has been a remarkable force, garnering community support, thoughts and prayers, as well as encouraging donations to help the firefighters’ families.

Three decades ago a similar fire took the lives of my mother’s cousin Jimmy Gibbons, 31, and his friend Lt. Paul M. Lentini of Engine Company 37, in a brownstone at 0 Newbury St. in the Back Bay. The Boston Fire Historical Society reports that just after 3 p.m. on 6 January 1981, a fire was discovered in a historic retail brownstone building by the entrance to the Boston Public Gardens, and fire “spread through an open-cage elevator shaft to the upper floors, which housed several offices, including that of the Boston School Volunteers and former Governor Francis Sargent [who] was able to escape the building unharmed… after the fire had been knocked down and overhauling operations had begun, a partial collapse of the upper floors occurred (an event similar to the tragic Vendome Fire of 1972). The third floor gave way, with the fourth floor crashing down on top of the firefighters… Twelve firefighters were trapped in the rubble. The body of Fire Lieutenant Paul M. Lentini of Engine Company 37 was located, trapped by a fallen beam. Beneath Lentini were several firefighters, who were trapped but alive. Searches continued for other missing firefighters, until all were accounted for except for Firefighter James M. Gibbons of Engine 37. After many hours of searching, his body was recovered at 10:30 p.m at the bottom of the collapse area”.

 

Firefighter James Michael Gibbons was born in Boston in 1949, the son of James J. Gibbons, a newspaperman for the Boston Herald, and Mary Joan Granville. He was married with two young sons at the time of his death. The Gibbons were a large Boston Irish family. His great-grandparents, James and Celia (Doherty) Gibbons had emigrated from County Donegal, Ireland, then married and started a large family in Boston. Their eldest son, Charles James Joseph Gibbons (1884-1945) married Margaret E. Duff(e)y and had four children, including my Nana, Marie Gibbons, and her younger brother James J. Gibbons – the father of Firefighter James “Jimmy” M. Gibbons. Jimmy Gibbons became a Boston firefighter in July 1974 at the age of 25 and had served with Brighton Ladder 22 and Dorchester Ladder 6 before his assignment in December 1976 to Engine Company 37 on Huntington Ave.

 

I inherited a small collection of family papers from Marie (Gibbons) Buckley Marotta, including the following newspaper clippings she held onto. She would sometimes reflect upon her nephew’s tragic death and describe his bravery and sense of humor, and how awestruck the family was when thousands of firefighters came to pay their respects.

 

GIBBONS-In Quincy, January 6, in the line of duty, Boston Firefighter James M., Engine Company 37; beloved husband of Marie E. (Foley); devoted father of Sean and Dennis; beloved son of James J. and Mary (Granville) Gibbons of Hyde Park; brother of Joan Gibbons of Quincy, Mrs. Barbara Crawford of East Bridgewater, and Mrs. Maureen Devin of Somerville. Funeral from the John J. O’Connor Funeral Home, 740 Adams St. (near Gallivan Boulevard), DORCHESTER, Saturday morning at 11:15. Funeral Mass in Our Lady of Good Counsel Church at 12:30. Relatives and friends respectfully invited. Visiting hours Thursday evening 7-9, Friday 2-4 and 7-9. Member Local 718, Society of St. Florian, B.F.D. Drill Team. Interment St. Joseph’s Cemetery. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in his memory to the Jimmy Fund.

Mass in Quincy on Saturday

A Mass for Pvt. James Gibbons, 31, of Quincy, a member of Engine Co. 37 of the Boston Fire Department, will be celebrated at 12:30 Saturday in Our Lady of Good Counsel Church, Quincy. Gibbons was killed Tuesday while fighting an eight-alarm fire at Arlington and Newbury Streets, Back Bay. He was appointed to Boston Fire Department in July, 1974, and was assigned to Ladder 22 in Brighton. In September, 1975, he was transferred to Ladder 6, Morton Street, Dorchester, and on December 1, 1976, he was assigned to Engine Co. 37, Huntington Avenue and Ruggles Street, Roxbury, from where he responded to the fire. He was a member of Local 718 of the International Association of Firefighters, Society of St. Florian and the Fire Department’s Drill Team. He leaves his wife, Marie E. (Foley); two sons, Sean and Dennis, and his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James J. Gibbons of Hyde Park. His father is a printer in the composing room of the Herald American. He also leaves three sisters, Joan Gibbons of Quincy, Mrs. Barbara Crawford of East Bridgewater and Mrs. Maureen Devin of Somerville. Interment will be in St. Joseph’s Cemetery, West Roxbury. Arrangements are by the John J. O’Connor and Son Funeral Home, Dorchester.

 

Years later I attended grad school on Huntington Avenue and often walked by Engine No. 37, where a memorial plaque is placed in honor of their fallen firefighters. My mother, brother and I later visited the firehouse specifically to read the plaque and chat with some of the firefighters to thank them and remember. At the time I was working on Newbury Street just a block away from 0 Newbury St., which has since been completely rebuilt and today houses a Burberry retail shop. A quieter place for reflection is at the beautiful Vendome Fire Memorial on Commonwealth Ave. and Dartmouth St.

Memorials at the Engine 37 Firehouse at 560 Huntington Ave., including a Lentini-Gibbons plaque. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/activefirehouseengine37.html

Memorials at the Engine 37 Firehouse at 560 Huntington Ave., including a Lentini-Gibbons plaque. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/activefirehouseengine37.html

In addition to the memorial plaques at Engine 37, they also had Boston University students paint a mural on the station wall memorializing their fallen firefighters as well as celebrating their unit. There is also a Lentini-Gibbons Memorial Baseball Diamond at East Second & N Streets in South Boston and a Fire Fighter Memorial at Florian Hall which commemorates all Boston Local 718 members who died in the line of duty, including James M. Gibbons. All these years later, we still remember, celebrate, and are so very thankful the bravery of all our firefighters.

The Fire Lt. Paul M. Lentini & Fire Fighter James M. Gibbons Memorial Baseball Diamond at East Second & N Streets, South Boston. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

The Fire Lt. Paul M. Lentini & Fire Fighter James M. Gibbons
Memorial Baseball Diamond at East Second & N Streets, South Boston. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

Fire Fighter Memorial at Florian Hall, IAFF Local 718 Headquarters, Hallet St., Dorchester, Mass. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

Fire Fighter Memorial at Florian Hall, IAFF Local 718 Headquarters, Hallet St., Dorchester, Mass. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

Right Tablet at the Florian Hall Firefighters Memorial, including James M. Gibbons. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

Right Tablet at the Florian Hall Firefighters Memorial, including James M. Gibbons. Courtesy of the Boston Fire Historical Society. http://www.bostonfirehistory.org/firefightermemorials.html

Amanuensis Monday: 1848 San Donato Val di Comino, Italy Marriages

While searching for family names in the San Donato Val di Comino records, I thought the San Donatese diaspora might appreciate having an accessible transcription of some of the historic civil registration indexes for the town. Awhile ago I transcribed the 1849 Births. Today I have transcribed the 49 marriages recorded during the year 1848.

1848 Marriages

Tavola alfabetica annual de matrimonj per l’anno mille ottocento quarantotto

Alphabetical table of annual marriages in the year one thousand eight hundred forty-eight

No. d’ord.

Page #

Cognomi e Nomi de sposi

Names and Surnames of Spouses

Patria

Home

Cognomi e nomi de genitori

Name and surname of parents

Giorno della celebrazione del matrimonio innanzi alla chiesa

Day of the marriage celebration in the church

Osservaz.

Observations

5

Antonellis, Antonio

San donato

Domenico Antonellis and Pasqua Gallo

28 February

 

Salvucci, Carmina

Idem

Luigi Salvucci and Caterina Salvucci

 

7

Antonellis, Giuseppe

Idem

Angelo Antonellis and Francesca Cantilli

3 March

 

Mazilli, Maria

Idem

Antonio Mazilli and Orazia Decitto

 

4

Bona, Donato

Idem

Loreto Bona and Tomasa Valentini

10 February

 

Cucuzzo, Angelica

Idem

Antonio Cucuzzo and Lucia Mulilli

 

14

Bona, Donato

Idem

Vincenzo Bona and Angela Ceccone

20 May

 

Marini, Marta

Idem

Luigi Marini and Loreta Rufo

 

8

Celluci, Carmine

Idem

Michele Celluci and Giovanna Cugini

8 March

 

Piscelli, Maria Annalia

Idem

 Pasquale Piscelli and Carolina Pesce

 

11

Casilli, Pietro

Idem

Vincenzo Casilli and Teresa Ceccone

31 March

 

Fabrizio, Sommata

Idem

Nicola Fabrizio and Maria Giuseppa Quintilini

 

11

Cugini, Gerardo

Idem

Pietro Cugini and Loreta Valentini

16 April

 

Baccaro, Costanza

Idem

Valerio Baccaro and Lucia Trojani

 

15

Casseti?, D Girolamo

Arce

Niccola Casseti? and Anna Franconi?

23 May

 

Salvucci, D Luigia

San donato

Emilio Salvucci and Clementina Antonangelo

 

20

Cardarelli, Gaetano

Idem

Giovanni Cardarelli and Lucreza Cedrone

15 August

 

Di Bona, Clementina

Idem

Gaetano Di Bona and Teresa Mazilli

 

15

Coletti, Paolo

Idem

Antonio Coletti and Nora Coletti

20 October

 

Quintiliani, Marianna

Idem

Luigi Quintiliani and Teresa Caruzzo

 

26

Ceccone, Gerardo

Idem

Gaetano Ceccone and Frigsda? Venture

23 October

 

Cardarelli, Antonia

Idem

Giuseppe Cardarelli and Felicia Saulutti?

 

28

Cellucci, Antonio

Idem

Donato Cellucci and Maria Tramontozzi

6 December

 

Visco?, Cesidia

Idem

Domenico Visco? and Anna Leone?

 

29

Cucchi, Sigr: Loreto

Idem

Francesco Cucchi and Susanna Vitti?

24 December

 

Cedrone, Giuseppa

Idem

Alessio? Cedrone and Costanza Cardarelli

 

2

Gentile, Cesidio

Idem

Mario? Gentile and Loreta Ventura

23 January

 

Cucchi, Maria

Idem

Felix Cucchi and Loreta Cedrone

 

12

Gentilucci, Giovanni

Idem

Francesco Gentilucci and Lucia Celluci

15 April

 

Leone, Vittoria

Idem

Francesco Leone and Clemenza Cucuzzo

 

5

Leone, Carmine

Idem

Michele Leone and Marianna Ventre

22 February

 

Ventre, Giuseppa

Idem

Vincenzo Ventre and Clementina Trojani

 

15

Bona, Pietro

San Donato

Vincenzo Bona and Angela Ceccone

20 February 1848

 

Coletta, Maria Elisabetta

Idem

Agostino Coletta and Blandina Cardarelli

 

16

Bona, Vincenzo

Idem

Domenico Bona and Marianna Salvucci

22 March

 

Roffo, Teresa Nunziata

Idem

Gaetano Roffo and Maria Angela Gallo

 

4

Cellucci, Loreto

Idem

Giovanni Cellucci and Lucrezia Cucuzzo

22 January

 

Cellucci, Anna Maria

Idem

Gaetano Cellucci and Lucia Quintiliano

 

6

Cugini, Domeniantonio

Idem

Carmine Cugini and Domenica Salvucci

29 January

 

Rufo, Caterina

Idem

Francesco Rufo and Maria Cedrone

 

7

Cellucci, Niccola

Idem

Giuseppe Cellucci and Antonia Cucchi

5 February

 

Tramontozzi, Maria Luisa

Idem

Angelo Tramontozzi and Maria Leone

 

11

Cardarelli, Donato

Idem

Giuseppe Cardarelli and Marianna Quintiliano

12 February

 

Quintiliano, Carmina Pasqua

Idem

Giuseppe Quintiliano and Loreta Masilli

 

12

Cardarelli, Luigi

Idem

Domenico Cardarelli and Maria Sacchetti

12 February

 

Tempesta, Domenica

Idem

Loreto Tempesta and Beladina Cellucci

 

17

Cellucci, Niccola

Idem

Gaetano Cellucci and Carmina Cucuzzo

3 April

 

Vergati, Antonia

Idem

Gaetano Vergati and Santa di Bona

 

18

Cecchi, Cesidio

Idem

Angelantonio Cecchi and Areangela Ventura

9 April

 

Salvucci, Nachele

Idem

Matteo Salvucci and Giacinta Gentile

 

19

Cugini, Luigi

Idem

Agostino Cugini and Antonia Coletta

6 May

 

Fabrizio, Loreta

Idem

Angelo Fabrizio and Giuseppina Valentino

 

20

Coletta, Benedetto

Idem

Niccola Coletta and Carolina Quintiliano

7 May

 

Paglia, Lucia

Idem

Loreto Paglia and Maria Luigia Ventura

 

21

Coletta, Carlo

Idem

Luigi Coletta and Diomira Cedrone

10 June

 

Ceccone, Maddalena

Idem

Gaetano Ceccone and Brigida Ventura

 

26

Cucuzzo, Carlo Donato

Idem

Giuseppe Cucuzzo and Venanzia Tempesta

5 August

 

Cardarelli, Blandina

Idem

Luigi Cardarelli and Giovanna Fabrizio

 

?

Camillo, Nunziato Agostino

San Donato

Francesco Camillo and Giuseppa Sambucci

14 October 1848

 

Rufo, Donata

Idem

Luigi Rufo and Luigia Salvucci

 

?

Coletta, Niccola Carmine

Idem

Liborio Coletta and Santa Tempesta

23 December

 

Rufo, Clementina

Idem

Antonio Rufo and Maria Ventre

 

?

Gatti, Raffaele Carmine

Idem

Fabiano Gatti and Maria Delicata

13 January 1849

 

Evangelista, Carmina Evagelista

Idem

Davide Evangelista and Loreta Cugini

 

?

Leone, Giuseppe Cedrone Domenico Francesco

Idem

Francesco Leone and Clemenza Cucuzzo

22 January 1848

 

Cucuzzo, Clemenza

Idem

Rocco Cucuzzo and Angela Celluci

 

?

Leone, Flamminio

Idem

Domenico Leone and Loreta Tocci

22 January “

 

Antonellis, Chiara

Idem

Luigi Antonellis and Nunziata Magnarelli

 

?

Leone, Cesidio Domenicantonio

Idem

Giovanni Leone and Antonia Rufo

5 February

 

Vergati, Domenica Natalizia

Idem

Pietro Vergati and Lucia Gatti

 

?

Leone, Pasquale

Idem

Giovanni Leone and Teresa Decina

12 February

 

Cucuzzo, Pasquala

Idem

Loreto Cucuzzo and Rosaria Antonellis

 

?

Leone, Domenico

Idem

Gaetano Leone and Livia Baccaro

16 February

 

Coletta, Teresa

Idem

Vincenzo Coletta and Giuseppina Pesce

 

?

Marini, Antonio Fortunato

Idem

Loreto Marini and Carmina Antonellis

5 February

 

Salvucci, Lucia

Idem

Pietro Salvucci and Giovanna Antonellis

 

?

Mazzala, Carlo

Idem

Donato Mazzala and Gaetana Gentilucci

25 November

 

Cedrone, Costanza

Idem

Teodoro Cedrone and Domenica Cedrone

 

?

Paglia, Giovanni

Idem

Pietro Paglia and Carmela Antonellis

17 June

 

Cardarelli, Marta

Idem

Saverio Cardarelli and Serafina Cotello

 

?

Piselli, Raffaele

Idem

Francesco Piselli and Teresa Cedrone

23 July

 

Coletta, Teodora

Idem

Francesco Coletta and Annamaria di Bona

 

26

Paglia, Cristino

San Donato

Pietro Paglia and Carmela Antonellis

7 October 1848

 

Cardarelli, Eleonora

Idem

Niccola Cardarelli and Serafina Gatti

 

28

Pellegrini, Carmine

Idem

Benedetto Pellegrini and Cardina Delina? Gatti

28 October

 

Tocci, Angiola

Idem

Francesco Tocci and Carmina Lombardi

 

30

Quintiliano, Loreto

Idem

Donato Quintiliano and Maria Cedrone

14 December

 

Marini, Cesidia Maria

Idem

Vincenzo Marini and Mazia Lanno

 

13

Rufo, Giuseppe

Idem

Filippo Rufo and Caterina Ruffo

12 February

 

Salvucci, Paolina

Idem

Luigi Salvucci and Caterina Salvucci

 

2

Salvucci, Luigi

Idem

Niccola Salvucci and Maddalena de Angelis

2 January

 

Rufo, Carmina Maria Lucia

Idem

Domenico Rufo and Teresa Cugini

 

1

Tocci, Domenico

Idem

Giovanni Tocci and Giusta Salvucci

2 January

 

Celluci, Maria Loreta

Idem

Giovanni Celluci and Lucrezia Cucuzzo

 

25

Tocci, Donato

Idem

Francesco Tocci and Carmina Lombardi

7 October

 

Mazzola, Maria

Idem

Luigi Mazzola and Lucia diStazio

 

32

Tocci, Angelantonio

Idem

Antonio Tocci and Anna Tramontozzi

7 January 1849

 

Rufo, Lucia

Idem

Pasquale Rufo and Maria Mazzola

 

Index1848

1848 San Donato Val di Comino Index of Marriages, Courtesy of Family History Library [FHL 1173844]

Index1848p2

1848 San Donato Val di Comino Index of Marriages, Courtesy of Family History Library [FHL 1173844]

Index1848p3

1848 San Donato Val di Comino Index of Marriages, Courtesy of Family History Library [FHL 1173844]

 

1848 San Donato Val di Comino Index of Marriages, Courtesy of Family History Library [FHL 1173844]

1848 San Donato Val di Comino Index of Marriages, Courtesy of Family History Library [FHL 1173844]

 

Did you locate an ancestor in this transcription – or have a correction to suggest? Leave a comment below to let me know! Then order the microfilm San Donato Val di Comino Matrimoni [Marriages] giugno 1827-1861, FHL 1173844 Items 1-15 to view the full marriage record using the page number provided by the index (or scan through the year if the indexed page number was obscured by the binding – the marriage records are arranged chronologically and therefore easy to find).