Remembering an EMS hero

Andrew Moreno dies at 41


Andrew Moreno dedicated his life to service. The longtime vital member of the Bellmore-Merrick Emergency Medical Squad, who worked at ground zero after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, died June 3. He was 41. A cause of death was not given.

Moreno was a former chief and lifetime member of the Bellmore-Merrick EMS, which he joined in 1995. He was also a member of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary in Orient and, when he moved out East to Southold and away from Bellmore-Merrick, he continued to rush to emergencies with the Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Corps, joining it in 2014. There he served as vice president of the board of trustees.

“He was just a very dedicated guy,” said Scott Resnik, a fellow former chief of the Bellmore-Merrick EMS. Resnik, now the second assistant chief, served with Moreno for nearly 20 years.

“He was a fixture in the department,” Resnik said. “Even after he moved out East, he would still come to major functions . . . You were used to seeing him.”

“He really kept pushing us forward and moved us progressively,” Chief Matt Lubliner said. “He tried to do a lot with the community — a lot of community outreach and involvement. It’s a big loss.”

“Now it’s one more person that was a fixture of the old Bellmore-Merrick that’s no longer there,” Resnik added. 

For a short time even after he moved to Southold, Moreno continued to serve as acting assistant chief of the Bellmore-Merrick EMS.

While a member of the department, he sometimes helped supply and maintain Bellmore-Merrick’s technology needs through his business, Advanced Technology Solutions of Long Island, which he owned. This would aid the non-profit department during times of limited financial resources.

Moreno served in the EMS when it was one of the units called to assist in the aftermath of the World Trade Center attacks in 2001. It was a dizzying time, but the EMS was there to provide medical relief to hundreds of rescuers and the few survivors they encountered.

“First, I was at Shea Stadium, then South Ferry, then a Burger King-turned-police headquarters,” Moreno told the Herald in 2002. “Over 150 firemen were treated, including one that suffered a heart attack and had to be transported out.”

That year, Moreno was part of a crew that revived a man who was having a diabetic seizure a few blocks from the EMS station, at Grand Avenue and Newbridge Road. The man was rushed to Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow and survived — an example of the usual routine when Moreno served in Bellmore-Merrick.

On June 11, the Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance Corps posted a radio call made in remembrance of Moreno to its Facebook page. “We thank you for your leadership, commitment and friendship,” the radio operator said in the video. “Rest easy. We have it from here.”

Moreno is survived by his parents, Joseph and Glenda Moreno, and his brother, Paul. He was buried in St. Patrick’s Cemetery in Southold after a funeral service on June 11.

“As one of the senior-most members of the department, to lose anybody that you’ve served with and served under, especially when somebody so young loses the battle with time, it’s just difficult,” Resnik said. “There are no words that describe the emotion when you lose somebody that was a fixture in the department.”