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Chapter 7 - Elizabeth's Birthday Wish

BASED ON NICK'S LIFE STORY

2003 Ford Ambulance is a sample photo of the ambulance that took my wife to the Hospital on the south shore of Staten Island

Photo of my beautiful wife taken on our 1961 honeymoon in Puerto Rico later in years would fall and break her hip in February 2003

Map showing location of February 2003 barge explosion & fire in the NY City-NJ area.

February 2003. A Bouchard Transportation Co. barge exploded & burned while unloading gasoline at the ExxonMobil docks at Port Mobil, Staten Island, NY, on the Arthur Kill waterway. Two workers were killed.

Burning wreckage of Bouchard Barge 125 after Feb 2003 explosion at ExxonMobil oil depot.

Part of the “depot side” firefighting contingent that fought the 2003 Staten Island barge explosion & fire.

“Vehicle-size” piece of the exploding Bouchard Barge 125 that was hurled into the depot on February 21, 2003.

One fear at the time of the February 2003 barge explosion was the possibility of a storage-tank chain reaction at the depot.

Smoldering remains and aftermath of the Bouchard Barge 125 explosion at ExxonMobil’s Staten Island depot. Half-sunken remains of the barge visible in the foreground, as large portions of it were blown out into the depot.

CHAPTER 7

MEMORY LANE - FEBRUARY xx, 2003 -

ELIZABETH'S "REAL" BIRTHDAY WISH CAME TRUE

February xx, 2003 began as a normal day and although at the time it was not a subject to joke about, today we are amazed and fortunately able to chuckle about this unbelievable story..........Liz and I had left our home to go to work just as we normally always did on this bright clear wintry day.... I had walked over to my car and was kneeling beside the car when I heard Liz yell out "oh $hit" followed by a loud scream.......It seems that Liz had picked out this little sliver of ice to step on, that caused her to take the worst possible fall in her life.......I immediately rushed to her side to help her get up but she was just in too much pain to be moved or get up......My neighbor Mike from across the street who was also going to work at that time, came running over to assist but like me was unable to help due to the severe pain that Liz expressed on her face along with her moans and groans......

Because of her severe pain the best I was able to do for her was to run into the house and call 911........The ambulance (LINK BELOW) arrived in a matter of minutes but must have seemed like a life time for Liz.....The two ambulance attendances seeing the pain she was in, knew that this was going to be a tuff assignment for them but they still had to do the task of lifting her and than placing her on the gurney..... After explaining to Liz their next move they picked her up, bearing her screams, and placed her on the gurney.....Right than and there the attendances must have known Liz had a broken hip......

Carefully placed in the ambulance and after telling me they would take her to Staten Island University Hospital South they proceeded on there way with me trying to follow behind them in hot pursuit.......Unable to keep up with them I trailed behind and would soon loose them.......When I reached the hospital I was only allowed to stay in the waiting room of the hospital......After what appeared to consist of the whole day of waiting, the broken hip was confirmed...

The next day February xx, was Liz's Birthday and although I wished her Birthday Wishes of recovery, I knew that she was unable to hear me due to the medication given to her in order to ease her pain.......By now other family members had reached the hospital and like me were waiting in her room for the doctor(s) to arrive and tell us the damage caused to Liz from the fall........The doctor finally arrived explaining that it was a broken hip and the operation to repair her hip could not happen until later that evening......He also told us that, "THE SURGERY WOULD DEFINITELY BE PERFORMED UNLESS THERE WAS AN EXPLOSION ? " and than left the room.

About an hour or so after the doctor left, my daughter Dina and I would be over by the window that was facing west towards New Jersey with a clear view, as we were on the top floor of the hospital...... At the southern part of Staten Island from the east shore where the hospital is located and the west shore the distance is fairly close to each other as the further south one travels on Staten Island the closer the east and west shores become.......Dina was sitting on the window sill while I was looking out of the window that had such a beautiful view........

The very next moment we knew, was the window flying open [it opened in ward into the room] hitting me in the chest and knocking Dina off the window sill onto the floor........Looking out the window I would see a dark black mushroom smoke cloud forming on the west shore of Staten Island that had the force that we certainly felt in the hospital room, with the mushroom cloud ending way over the size of the hospital's three or so floors.......Below I was able to find an actual video of this explosion that I would later find out from news reports to have happened at the Port Mobil barge, at approximately 10:00 am on Liz's birthday...It was my understanding that the casualty list would be several people but not enough to delay Liz's surgery as told to us by the room attending doctor....

If you can, watch the video to the end to see the news reports and the damaged caused to the water ways in this tragedy....And I thought these things only happened in the movies.... If I wanted to make up and write this stuff, it could not have possibly come out more devastating than the way it occurred in this two day real life situation......

SO, HAPPY MOTHERS DAY TO LIZ (glad we are all still here and your birthday recovery wish came true) AND TO ALL THE OTHER GOOD PEOPLE LIVING OUT THERE IN THIS WONDERFUL WORLD...............Nick.....May 8, 2011

~ For the newspaper story, (courtesy of Nicholas Georgianis and Chapter revised on 3/26/2016,) click on this link ~ http://www.pophistorydig.com/topics/bouchard-barge-explosion-2003/

After being pulled from near the explosion area, fire boats proceeded to douse Bouchard Barge 35 with cool water, at it was also loaded with gasoline and fire officials feared it too would explode.


Video and audio clips

SO ENJOY YOURSELF ...!!!!... AS WE NEVER KNOW WHAT THE NEXT MOMENT IN LIFE HAS IN STORE FOR US......This video was apparently a security devise and I asume was projecting from New Jersey, across the Raraton Bay where the explosion took place on Staten Island at the Port Mobile barge.....As you will see when viewing it, it is an actual happening beginning at 10:00 A.M. on February xx, 2003, the same date as Elizabeth's Birthday.....



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