Parks Renames Field In Honor Of Fallen FirefighterFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 18, 2011
Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe today joined Assembly Member Matt Titone, Council Member Deborah Rose, FDNY Staten Island Borough Commander Michael Marrone and members of the Margiotta family to cut the ribbon on a new synthetic turf field at Prall Playground. The field was named in honor of Charles Margiotta, a local fireman who lost his life at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Staten Island Pipes and Drums performed “God Bless America” and “America the Beautiful” at the ceremony.
“Charles Margiotta was a true hero who served our city admirably in his service with the FDNY. His memory will live on in the smiles of the children who play at this brand new field,” said Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe. “Thanks to $1.3 million in funding from Mayor Bloomberg, Prall Playground is now home to a new synthetic turf field, with accessible features that will ensure all kids have the opportunity to play here.”
The $1.3-million project, funded by Mayor Bloomberg, at Margiotta Field includes the reconstruction of an asphalt ballfield into a synthetic turf field, reconstructed perimeter fencing, new accessible dugouts, two drinking fountains, a ground hydrant and misting station, three half court basketball courts, new concrete bleachers and an accessible ramp and stairs. Construction began in June 2010.
Lieutenant Charles Margiotta was a 20-year veteran of the FDNY. On his way home, after filling in for a firefighter in Brooklyn, he heard the news of the attacks on the radio and pulled off to highway to join Rescue 5, headed for the towers. Concerned no one would know where he was, he called his mother, Molly. She was the last relative he spoke with. His last words to her were, “I love you.”
Prall Playground is named after Anning Smith Prall (1870-1937). The Pralls had lived on Staten Island since 1670, and Anning Smith boldly added to that legacy by serving three times as President of the Board of Education and as Congressman for Staten Island.