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Getzville mourns former fire chief after job-related cancer death

Former chief Irving Isenberg was laid to rest on Monday after a procession and service at Temple Beth Zion.

GETZVILLE, N.Y. — The Getzville community is mourning the loss of a hero who is being remembered for his dedication and service to Western New York, as well as his bravery during a national crisis.

Friends, family, and fellow first responders are getting their chance to say goodbye to longtime firefighter and former chief Irving Isenberg.

He was 55 years old. He passed away on Friday from a job-related cancer.

"He was a mentor, and we’re going to miss him," said Daniel Cownie, assistant chief of the Getzville Fire Company.

A small procession brought Isenberg to the Getzville Fire Company for Sunday's visitation.

Governor Cuomo directed flags to be flown at half-staff on Tuesday in honor of Isenberg.

Isenberg was a member of the fire company for 29 years. He assisted in the statewide mutual aid deployment to Ground Zero following the attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001.

He and three other firefighters from Getzville were stationed one block away from Ground Zero, helping assist EMS crews with rescue efforts.

Three years ago he was diagnosed with a cancer commonly found in 9/11 first responders.

On Sunday, his fellow brothers and sisters in the fire service remembered their leader and mentor.

"When we had a question he had the answer, he always had the answer to help us, help the community, and keep moving the Getzville Fire Company in the right direction," said Daric Will, assistant chief of the Getzville Fire Company.

"Losing him is a huge loss to us. We are going to keep going forward, like he said, keep moving the chains. That was his quote: keep moving the chains. And that's what were going to do."

The fire company says they will be retiring Isenberg's number, which was No. 53.

They are also accepting donations for stickers to support his family during this difficult time.

The fire company is also asking people to turn their porch lights on and use a red light bulb during the month of November to honor Isenberg and all firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty.

The visitation at the fire company will run until 8 p.m. Sunday.

His funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Monday at Temple Beth Zion.
There will be processional that will begin at the Getzville Fire House on Dodge Road, travel on the 990 South and the 290 West to Temple Beth Zion on Delaware Avenue.

After the services, the processional will continue to Temple Beth El Cemetery in Cheektowaga.

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