Linore T. Simmond, who was one of the first women firefighters hired by the New York City Fire Department, died of a stroke May 24, 2001, just two months after retiring from the department. Simmond, 52, suffered from hypertension and had had several previous strokes.
Simmond was among the group of 41 women who successfully sued the FDNY in 1980-1982 over the validity of its entry-level physical test. She worked at Engine Company 218 in Brooklyn, and later transferred into the Fire Safety Education Bureau, where she was a popular speaker on fire safety issues. She received the Isaac Liberman Public Service Award in 1994 for her contributions to the department's recruiting efforts among women and people of color.
Before becoming a firefighter, Simmond was a caseworker in the city's child welfare department, taking a number of foster children into her home, and adopting several children. Co-worker Lt. Brenda Berkman said of Simmond, "Whatever task she undertook, for her family or the fire department, she gave 100 percent." Simmond is survived by eight children and sixteen grandchildren.
NETWORKING THE WOMEN OF TODAY'S FIREFIGHTING WORLD, AND PROVIDING RESOURCES TO HELP BUILD THE FIRE SERVICE OF THE FUTURE