On Thursday, Anthony Greco, the son of late 9/11 responder Paul Greco, honored his father by officially playing for his favorite NHL team, the New York Rangers.
According to the New York Post, Anthony Greco’s father was an FDNY firefighter for more than 20 years. He passed away in May of 2020 after battling several illnesses that resulted from breathing toxic air at Ground Zero following the infamous 9/11 terrorist attacks at the World Trade Center. He was 54-years-old at the time of his death. Along with being dedicated to his career, Greco’s father was also a longtime fan of the New York Rangers.
The media outlet revealed that after the first 20 minutes of the New York Rangers game against the San Jose Sharks, Anthony Greco logged in exactly 3:43 of ice time. It was noted that a total of 343 firefighters were killed at the World Trade Center on 9/11.
Speaking about watching her son on the ice as a New York Ranger, Anthony Greco’s mother, Mary Jane, stated, “We know [Paul] was watching. Along with a lot of other guys up there cheering for him.”
Anthony Greco is also the first Queens native to ever play for the New York Rangers. He signed with the team after being on the AHL teams Panthers, Lightning, and Sharks. Mary Jane said all her son ever wore was Ranger jerseys when he was little and when he first started skating. “He absolutely did [inherit the fandom]. There was not a chance in the matter.”
Anthony Greco spoke about his father during the MSG broadcast on Thursday. “Some of my favorite memories are going to game[s] with him growing up. It’s a tough situation, but I’m sure he’s happy and watching.”
Friends Remember Anthony Greco’s Father & His Dedication as a Hockey Dad
While speaking to the New York Post, Pete Maslinski, a now-retired firefighter and friend of Anthony Greco’s father, spoke about the late 9/11 responder’s dedication to his son’s hockey career. “He’d be like, ‘All right bro. I’m leaving Minnesota now. I’ll be there in 24 Horus. To come to work! And I’m like, “What, are you out of her mind? He would call himself an asphalt cowboy. Listen to country music. And he loved it.”
Maslinski also said that his family used to travel with Anthony Greco’s family to watch him play earlier in his career. They would fly out to games at the Ohio State University, where Greco would compete for four NCAA seasons. “We’d go anywhere we could with this kid. We’ve followed him forever. I told everybody, I said it at my eulogy for Paul. I emulated him being a dad. That’s how I tried to raise my kids. He just was the greatest dad I’ve ever seen.”