Woman gets a chance to thank firefighter who saved her life 16 years ago

1010 WINS-It doesn’t happen often, but this woman was given a chance to thank the firefighter who saved her life 16 years ago.

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New York City Fire Department (FDNY)

In 2002, Anissa Cruz and her family were trapped in their burning NYC apartment when firefighters came to rescue them. The fire killed her father, but thanks to now-retired Lt. Stephen McNally at FDNY Engine 75 and Ladder 33 Anissa is alive today.

16 years later Anissa got to thank her hero this week, and everyone involved was feeling slightly taken aback by it all.

“I remember everything in the room got very hot. I remember feeling suffocated. I was overwhelmed and terrified, Anissa says in a post on the FDNY’s Facebook page.

“That event stuck with me and since that day, I have gained so much perspective. When I made the plan to come back to New York to visit family this month, I knew I was going to visit the firehouse and tell my story.”

SEE ALSO: Firefighter Catches Little Girl Dropped From Balcony During Apartment Fire


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New York City Fire Department (FDNY)

Lt. McNally said, “it was a difficult situation, seeing a child in that condition, but seeing her now and seeing all of her accomplishments is overwhelming.”

Anissa just graduated from the fire academy and plans to become a firefighter and follow in the footsteps of the man who saved her life.

You can read Anissa’s full story in the FDNY’s Facebook post.

RELATED: Firefighters smoke jumping in Washington

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Firefighters smokejumping in Washington
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Firefighters smokejumping in Washington
Supervisors Guy McLean (L) and Inaki Baraibar (R) observe smokejumper recruits as they complete their first jump from an airplane into a field adjacent to the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper navigates towards the ground after leaping from an airplane during a training exercise in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper recruit lands after leaping from an airplane during a training exercise in a field adjacent to the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper is seen under his parachute after leaping from an airplane during a training exercise in a field adjacent to the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Veteran smokejumpers and recruits watch as a recruit completes his first jump from an airplane into a field adjacent to the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper lands in a large gravel circle after leaping from an airplane during a training exercise at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumpers celebrate a successful training jump at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Assistant spotter Scott McClanahan (L) and spotter Daren Belsby (R) size up the landing area for smokejumpers preparing to complete a practice jump from an airplane while flying above Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 30, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumpers navigate towards the ground after leaping from an airplane during a training exercise in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruit Ross Lindell untangles his parachute after landing in cow manure during his first training jump from an airplane into a field adjacent to the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Spotter Daren Belsby communicates with a smokejumper preparing to complete a practice jump from an airplane while flying above Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 30, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruit Leo Brett winds up a hose after cleaning equipment at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper recruit lands in gravel while practising parachute landing fall techniques at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumpers exit an airplane during a training flight in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Smokejumper recruits clean their sweat-soaked equipment after training in extreme heat at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, United States June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Rookie smokejumper Brian Anderson (R) prepares to jump from an airplane with fellow smokejumpers while flying above Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 30, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Parachutes ready for use are seen in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper prepares to leap from an airplane while flying above Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 30, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper Jeremy Zemke labels a parachute he has finished packing, in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruits train by jumping from a large tower while attached to zip lines at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruit Jeff Rasmussen does squats with a large rock, punishment for dropping his helmet from atop the practice tower, during training at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper recruit trains by jumping from a large tower while attached to a zip line at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Instructors (R) watch a rookie class of eight smokejumper recruits as they practise parachute landing fall techniques at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
A smokejumper leaps from an airplane during a training flight above Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 30, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES. TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Smokejumper recruits exercise at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
(L-R) Supervisors Daren Belsby, Inaki Baraibar, and Fidel Verduzco observe a smokejumper recruit as he jumps from a training tower while connected to a zip line at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruit Ross Lindell lands after jumping from a large tower while attached to a zip line at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruits enter the parachute loft during training at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper recruits train at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumper Jeremy Zemke labels a parachute he has finished packing, in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Smokejumpers gather for a meeting in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Tools for packing parachutes are seen in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 7, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
Magnets identifying which smokejumpers are scheduled to deploy are seen on a board in the parachute loft at the North Cascades Smokejumper Base in Winthrop, Washington, U.S., June 6, 2016. REUTERS/David Ryder SEARCH "SMOKEJUMPING" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "THE WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
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