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Thread: A People Magazine 'Most Eligible Bachelor'

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    A People Magazine 'Most Eligible Bachelor'

    Thomas Foley

    A People Magazine 'Most Eligible Bachelor'

    December 21, 2001

    All America got to marvel at the muscled torso and boyish good looks of Rescue Co. 3 firefighter Tom Foley last year when People magazine named him No.10 on its list of 100 most eligible bachelors - just a few clicks behind actor George Clooney.

    Foley, 32, of West Nyack, had earned that distinction through an act of heroism months earlier, lowering himself by rope to rescue two construction workers whose 17th-floor scaffold had collapsed.

    Though Foley's handsome face had earned him acting stints on TV shows "Third Watch" and "The Sopranos" and hunk-of-the-month spreads in a series of firefighter calendars, Foley's peers say he really stood out for his lifesaving instincts. As a standout probationary firefighter he'd been handpicked to join elite Squad 41 in the Bronx, skipping the usual apprenticeship at an engine company, and in 1999 became one of the city's youngest rescue firefighters.

    "All the girls were crazy about Tommy," says Mike Conboy, a fellow firefighter in Bronx's Rescue 3 who helped organize Foley's funeral Sept. 29. "But you spoke to Tommy a couple of minutes and you realized his love for the fire department."

    People magazine noted that Foley's first rescues were in high school, when he squired a series of dateless girls to their proms. At the firehouse, he was the social live wire, Conboy said, organizing regular party cruises around Manhattan Island at which he'd put on a cowboy hat, crank up his favorite country music and get people dancing and stomping their feet.

    But he was serious about relationships: He revered his parents, Tom and Patricia Foley, whose 36-year marriage he considered a model.

    "If I can't have it the way my folks have it, I'm not doing it," he said last year.

    During the frantic first days after Sept. 11, Foley's company more or less adopted his younger brother, Danny Foley, 30, a firefighter with nearby Ladder Co. 49 who stuck with them during the recovery effort. It was Danny Foley who found his brother's body in the remains of the south tower on the night of the 11th day, Conboy said.

    In addition to his parents and brother, Tom Foley is survived by a sister, Joanne Gross of Pine Bush, N.Y.

    -- Elizabeth Moore (Newsday)

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    Picture From People Magazine

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    Another picture

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