On June 26th, Lt. Gordon Ambelas and his company – together with two other fire companies – were honored by Commissioner Nigro, Rabbi Niederman, and the Gotlieb family for saving the life of their son Mendy from a role up gate. Less than 10 days later, the community was shocked to learn that he passed away while rescuing another precious life in Williamsburg. The following are the statements by Rabbi David Niederman and the Gotlieb family.
“We are deeply saddened by the passing of Lt. Gordon Ambelas while saving yet another life, less than 10 days after we were honoring him for saving the life of Mendy Gotlieb. We express our deepest condolences to the family and we keep his two young daughters in our prayers. We also want to share our condolences with the FDNY as a whole, and specifically Ladder 119, and the Hooper St. station-house. Lt. Ambelas’ memory will live on in Mendy and the many others he saved, and of course in the precious family he’s leaving behind,” said Rabbi David Niederman, Executive Director of the UJO of Williamsburg.
“This tragic story shows the dangers the lieutenant and all FDNY members put themselves in, willingly and knowingly, to save others. They are really the bravest,” Rabbi Niederman concluded.
Statement by the Gotlieb Family: “We were shocked and devastated to hear about the tragic death of Lt. Ambelas, the savior of our child Mendy. He literally sacrificed his life for others. I hope that his family finds solace in the so many lives that are living on because of him. May he family have no more sorrow.”