9 NY FFs lose more than 1,200 pounds

The nine Huntington Manor volunteer firefighters underwent bariatric procedures and inspired one another to work toward a healthier lifestyle

By Laura French

HUNTINGTON STATION, N.Y. — Nine New York volunteer firefighters have dropped more than 1,200 pounds collectively after inspiring one another to improve their health. 

Huntington Manor Fire Department Chief Jon Hoffman, 1st Assistant Chief Chuck Brady, 2nd Assistant Chief Jimmy Glidden, First Aid Squad Captain Kathleen Castillo and Firefighters Tyler Gibbs, Karl McGinn, John Hall and Vito Reciniello have each lost at least 80 pounds over the past few years, with most losing more than 100 pounds, according to the New York Post

Hoffman, who has lost 119 pounds since July 2018, said that as one firefighter began seeing results in their weight-loss efforts, other firefighters were encouraged to work on their own health, exercising more and improving their diets. All of the firefighters also underwent bariatric procedures at Long Island Obesity Surgery PC. 

Firefighters said risks to their health such as high blood pressure and cholesterol, diabetes and sleep apnea drove them to adopt a healthier lifestyle for themselves and their families. McGinn, who has lost 154 pounds since September 2019, said he didn't want his 7-year-old daughter to lose her father, as he had lost his own father to a heart attack when he was 3.

McGinn said his weight loss has also improved his abilities as a firefighter — he recently completed a training exercise crawling through a narrow space, which he said he never would have been able to do at his highest weight of 364 pounds. 

In addition to their bariatric procedures, firefighters improved their diets by cutting back on fast foods, eating smaller portions and building up their endurance for exercises like hiking and cycling. The firefighters reported health and life improvements, such as lowered blood pressure, less breathing problems, higher self-esteem and more ability be active and play with their kids or grandkids. 


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