Processional Route, Info on Funeral for Philly's 1st Fallen Female Firefighter

Friends, family and the city of Philadelphia will begin the farewell to a fallen hero Friday.

A viewing will be held Friday night for Joyce Craig, the first female Philadelphia firefighter to die in the line of duty.

The public viewing will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at Batchelor Brothers funeral home on North Broad Street Friday.

A second viewing will be held at the funeral home from 8 to 10 a.m. Saturday with interment to follow at Ivy Hill Cemetery following a three-mile processional.

Broad Street from 69th the Cheltenham avenues will be closed from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday with the exception local traffic, said Philadelphia Police.

For the people who want to salute Craig as she makes her final call, around 11 a.m., Craig’s body will makes its way from the funeral home, down Cheltenham Avenue and left onto Wadsworth Avenue onto Easton Road to Ivy Hill Cemetery.

Police warned that Cheltenham Avenue, Wadsworth Avenue and Easton Road could be closed at any time after 11 a.m.

The 36-year-old Craig died Tuesday after becoming trapped in the basement of a home where an elderly woman was later rescued.

Inside Engine 64 firefighters placed flowers, candles and photographs on the 11-year veteran's locker.

“She was a firefighter’s firefighter," her boss, Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Derrick Sawyer, said Tuesday. “She had a strong work ethic. She prided herself in working at busy engine companies," he said.

Craig left behind her two children — 16-month-old Laylani Lewis and 16-year-old Mehki Donte Green.

The fire union said donations can be made payable to the "Local 22 Joyce Craig-Lewis Memorial Fund" and mailed to 901 Arch St., Philadelphia, 19107. It said all money raised will go directly to support her children.

More than 40 Philadelphia firefighters have been killed in the line of duty since 1943, according to the International Association of Fire Fighters. The last, Capt. Michael Goodwin, died April 6, 2013, in a roof collapse while battling a fire in the city's Queen Village section.

Women account for relatively few firefighter deaths nationally — 29 of the 1,059 on-duty deaths recorded by the U.S. Fire Administration between 2003 and 2012 — in part because they are still vastly outnumbered by men on department rosters.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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