Final farewell begins for Philadelphia firefighter Michael Goodwin

A casket carrying the remains of Philadelphia Fire Captain Michael Goodwin arrives at the Givnish Funeral Home on Wednesday, April 10th.

April 11, 2013 5:28:44 AM PDT
The final goodbye for fallen Philadelphia Fire Captain Michael Goodwin began Wednesday.


It was quite a ceremony outside the Givnish Funeral home in Northeast Philadelphia as the leaders of the Philadelphia Fire Department led the way as Engine 53 carried the casket of fire Captain Michael Goodwin.

His widow Kelly and family arrived to watch the procession along with the pomp and circumstance deserving of a man who dedicated his life to the fire service.

Mayor Michael Nutter said, "We try to rally around each other, but all eyes, all focus, all attention must be on the Goodwin family."

Hundreds of public servants will file into the funeral home to pay their respects to Goodwin, who was killed over the weekend in a massive fire on Fabric Row in Queen Village.

At Wednesday's ceremony before the viewing, the entire Philadelphia Police Department command staff stood and saluted the fallen hero.

"I think it's important that we honor all of our heroes and certainly Captain Goodwin falls into that category, giving his life in the line of duty," said Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey.

The city continues to mourn the loss of the 29-year veteran and it was Mayor Nutter who presented Captain Goodwin's wife with the American flag, which draped his casket.

"It's not about me and it's not about us. It's about duty, it's about honor, it's about respecting the great work and service these men and women who do what they do," added Nutter.

The second viewing will be held Thursday from 9:00 a.m. until 10:45 a.m.

A funeral service will follow at noon at Saint Michael's Lutheran Church in Kensington.

Goodwin will be laid to rest at Hillside Cemetery in Roslyn, Pennsylvania.

Goodwin, 53, plunged from the roof of a three-story building in the city's Queen Village section Saturday night. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

Another firefighter, 28-year-old Andrew Godlewski, was burned while trying to rescue him.

Goodwin, a 29-year veteran of the fire department, had recently taken the test for a promotion to battalion chief.

Executive Fire Chief Richard Davison announced Monday that the promotion will be awarded posthumously, and that the promotion will enhance his family's benefits.

Goodwin is survived by a wife and two grown children.