Former colleague says Weissman 'would do anything for anybody.'
ITHACA, N.Y. (The Ithaca Journal/WUSA) - A firefighter and paramedic, formerly of Ithaca, died Thursday after falling from a highway overpass while responding to a car fire in northern Virginia.
Joshua Weissman, 33, of Bristow, Va., a firefighter for the Alexandria Fire Department, responded to a car fire on Interstate 395 Wednesday night in Shirlington, Va. State police said two cement barriers with a 3-foot gap between separate the lanes.
Weissman fell 30 feet to the creek below the interstate. He was pulled from the creek by fellow firefighters and taken to Washington Hospital Center, where he died late Thursday afternoon of a severe head injury, Alexandria Fire Department officials said.
MEMORIAL PAGE: Joshua Weissman
Weissman was a seven-year veteran of the Alexandria Fire Department. Fire officials say the last time an employee was seriously injured while on duty was 15 years ago.
Weissman worked at one time for Bangs Ambulance as a first responder. He joined the Cayuga Heights Fire Department as a teenager.
Cayuga Heights Fire Chief George Tamborelle described Weissman as dedicated to the profession. He even met his wife at the fire department.
"He was completely dedicated to helping others from the time he was 16," Tamborelle said. "All he's wanted to do was be a firefighter and a paramedic, and he's done that."
Thursday morning, Tamborelle said, "Josh is absolutely caring; you have to know Josh to really understand it. He is really a friend. He'd do anything for anybody. I know you say that about people, but with Josh it's so true. I probably wouldn't be chief if it wasn't for him."
WUSA and the Associated Press contributed to this report
By Liz Lawyer and Megan Goldschmidt