Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Sergeant Rodney C. Gillis

New York City Police Department, New York

End of Watch Tuesday, September 11, 2001

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Sergeant Rodney C. Gillis

Rodney, I hope you have found peace. You were an inspiration to me in my rookie year. You treated us as equals as green as we were in the 77 pct. You always took the time to share your street knowledge to help us smarten up and be better cops. You always put front a strong professionalism and an infectious smile even when personally you were struggling. I’m a better person for having crossed your path. Thank you.

PO Gregory Thornton

September 12, 2019

Thank you for your bravery you helped save many lives and I am grateful that you helped serve you city for 13 years and you will go down in history as a hero and someone who was willing to put his own life on the line to serve others. Thank you!

Jordan Bohn
Milton Hershey School Student

March 18, 2018

Poem to Remember the Fallen Heroes of 9/11

"A Lonely Lighthouse Am I"

A lonely lighthouse am I,
but although I'm lonely,
Worrying doesn't pay,
For I'm in charge of keeping ships safe,
From crashing onto my rocky shore.

A Lonely lighthouse am I,
But I have to keep my light burning bright,
For the ships need me,
otherwise they will die on the rocks,
in the stormy night.

A lonely lighthouse am I,
But I keep my nightly watch,
upon the deadly waves,
for those ships who brave the storm,
who will need a lighthouse till the morn.

Thank you for becoming true heroes in helping the fallen to safety.

Trina M Showalter
Brigham Young University Student

July 27, 2017

Prayed for your family this morning in church.
You are not forgotten.
Chaplain Jim Stout, USBP
Tucson, Az

SPA Chaplain
USBP, Tucson, AZ

September 12, 2016

May your family assuage the pain in the lost of a true hero. Watch over them, and also watch over us too. Rest in Peace my brother.

N.Y.PD. Lt.(Ret.) Ray Flores

September 11, 2016

Sgt. Gillis, I carry your memory as an example of a caring professional member of the NYPD Emergency Service Unit. As a Sr. Parole Officer I was a member of the Joint NYPD, NYS Parole/ Targeted Offender Program (TOPs Unit). There were numerous times that your team lead our Execution of Search Warrants. On the day of the attack I monitored the ESU Radio Traffic and recognized you making a request for a helicopter to transport you & your team to the roof of the tower so you could attempt to rappel down to those trapped by the fire. Your bravery & sacrifice will always be remembered.

Chief James Contino (Retired)
NYS Parole, Special Offender Bureau

September 11, 2015

Dear Rodney
It's been 14yr's honey, you are a grandfather
Your babies had babies. I miss you and I know I will never stop missing you. Steven and I have four grandchildren, you have so many wonderful people that have such love and respect for you. Myself and other's miss your laughter your unique humor. Your passion for the job. And how you cared about people.
Love you for ever partner.

Detective Madeline Lawrence RET.

September 6, 2015

Rip to Sgt. Rodney Gillis may your legacy live on you will be forever loved and respected..... I remember seeing you in Brooklyn when I was a kid I thought it was so cool to see a young officer it was cool it gave us hope. I was devasted when I saw your face on tv as a victim of the 911 attacks. I became an officer in 2006. Thank you for always encouraging us youngins to stay on the right track. Love you ❤❤❤ forever #nypd

Po Connie Duncan

September 2, 2015

On the 13th Anniversary of 9/11, I participated in the Patriot 5K (Corpus Christi, Texas) in remembrance of the first responders. I was honoured to wear the name of NYPD Sergeant Rodney Gillis (Badge No.1889) on my running bib and I will continue to honour his memory, keeping his family in my prayers.

Elizabeth Duhan

September 12, 2014

Today, I had the honor of reading Sergeant Rodney Gillis' name during the 9/11 memorial on the top deck of "USS Midway Aircraft Carrier" in San Diego. Thank you for all of your selfless service to us. You will never be forgotten! September 11, 2014

Konrad Sheehan

September 12, 2014

Haven't forgotten you big guy. May you rest from your labors

US Border Patrol

September 11, 2013

He was a great guy, and a great cop.

Retired Sergeant John Sandusky
Worked together in 79 Precinct

December 11, 2012

You as always are remembered

Civilian, Manchester, NH

September 11, 2012

Rodney I Had the pleasure to work with you in the 79 pct back in 1989-91 and knew how hard working of a cop you were and how much you loved the job. You then studied and became Sgt Gillis and then Sgt Rodney Gillis of ESU Truck #8 , But then Lost a good friend and brother to a cowardly act that WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN By any of our brothers throughout the world , I just want to say God Bless You And Your Family and Thanks for being a Friend AND A BROTHER to all of us.. You Will Be Deeply Missed BUT NEVER FORGOTTEN ! !

Retired New York City Police
Police Officer Gustavo A Garcia

February 10, 2012

I did not have the pleasure to know Rodney. But I had the distinct honor to wear an armband with his name on it in a ceremony in Long Island on 9/11/11. It took place in the Long Island beach community of Long Beach where I have some friends who live and surf there. The town and the adjacent towns have a heavy concentration of firemen and policemen. A significant number of these public servants were first responders on 9/11.

So last Sunday, I was honored to be one of 343 local surfers who paddled out to sea and gathered beyond the waves to lay a memorial wreath - each one of us wore an armband with the name of one of the fallen – I represented Sergeant Gillis. The event began with a ceremonial mass on the beach to honor the victims and their families. The surfers then formed a long line to salute the victims’ families and many uniformed police, firefighters and military as they passed by. Then we paddled out, formed a circle to lay the wreath, heard some inspirational words, and held hands and chanted USA, USA…

I have attached a brief YouTube video so that Rodney's falimy and friends could see how he and his many brothers ansd sisters were honored. (An international surfing competition had just taken place there at Long Beach, which is why this video clip was produced by Quiksilver.)

My thoughts and prayers go out to Rodney's family and friends. He was a hero.

God Bless - David Brazda

David Brazda
civilian admirer

September 16, 2011

I was a new ESU officer-when I met sgt Rodney gillis. I was highly motivate, a marine bigger than life living amongst ESU legends. Rodney was more than a legend, he was everything I needed to model my ESU self after. sgt. Rodney gillis was me. Our time together was brief but his impact on me profound. I cried at his home, ten years later I still cry, for our country, our city, Rodney and all the E men, officers and first responders lost that dark day.

Detective Gregory a Anderson ESU
Newyork police department

September 11, 2011

Rodney and I grew up in the same neighborhood. He attended and played football at James Madison HS in Bklyn, NY. While I attended and was a cheerleader at the rival school Sheepshead Bay HS. Our young adult lives were filled with bragging on which team was better! If we lost a game I'd dread seeing him because it meant listening to him brag for a whole school year!! Later he joined the NYPD and I followed shortly after. I thank God for the laughs and taunts that we shared. Gone but Never Forgotten, thank you for your sacrifice Rodney. R.I.P.

Retired P.O. Toni Miller

September 9, 2011

to live 10 years after in honor of those who lost stand tall & doubt....Sgt. Rodney Gillis deserves a heroes tribute....LEST WE FORGET.....

CWO3 Phillip Lumagui

September 8, 2011

I first met Rodney Gillis who was an ESU officer responding to one of my jobs in the 77 Pct. He was reliable and brave, everything and ESU cop was suppose to be. When Rodney got promoted to sergeant, he was assigned to the 77Pct and became my supervisor. He was fair and a strong leader. It was an honor working with you Sgt. honor.

Detective Michael Alcazar

August 9, 2011

I found myself on this website and entered Rodney's name.
Ten years.....

I had the honor of working with Rodney in the Seven-Seven
after he got promoted and until he made it back home to ESU!
Rodney was an intelligent and brave cop. I witnessed him on the streets first hand. I was at the WTC that morning and God spared my life. I can tell you that if I had been alongside him
then, I would have followed him anywhere. Your back was covered with Rodney. Rest well my brother. Your memory lives on with me.

Sgt. Damyn Cowan
NYPD, Arson & Explosion Squad

June 2, 2011


Thank you for your service and courage. I can't even begin to imagine what it must have been like on that day, but I know that the sacrifice, courage and service that you and your fellow officers displayed will never be forgotten. May God bless you and your family, and all the other heroes that gave the ultimate sacrifice that day.

Deputy Frank
WCSO, North Carolina

July 29, 2010

Thank you for your service sergeant, you are not forgotten

Fellow officer

January 17, 2010

I had honor to know Rodney a short while working on the NBC show Third Watch... He was a beloved member of the Third Watch family. A consummate professional, he lent his expertise towards the authenticity of the show...while at the same time sharing his warmth, humor and generosity. Though the years pass, I shall never forget him or his beautiful spirit. His strong character and sense of duty was a real inspiration. Love and prayers to his family and friends.

Ben McCrea
Co-worker on NBC's "Third Watch"

September 11, 2009

I am forever in debt to the 23-37 and the 343. Your sacrifice has not been forgotten. You are a true hero, Thank you for your service Sir.

Deputy and Firefighter
Glades County, Florida

September 11, 2009


Eight years since you made the ultimate sacrifice. Your heroic actions are not forgotten.


September 11, 2009

Want even more control of your Reflection? Create a free ODMP account now for these benefits:

  • Quick access to your heroes
  • Reflections published quicker
  • Save a Reflection signature
  • View, edit or delete any Reflection you've left in the past

Create an account for more options, or use this form to leave a Reflection now.