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K-9 Police Officer John M Cortazzo


K-9 Police Officer Cortazzo's Act of Heroism

Port Authority K-9 Officer John Cortazzo was home in Montvale when the planes flew into the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. He and Senna, his German shepherd partner, raced to headquarters at Port Newark and then to the smoldering wreckage.

He came home the next day “covered in white powder from head to toe,” said his wife, Patty.

Officer Cortazzo would return to Ground Zero from time to time with his bomb-sniffing dog.
Officer John Cortazzo died in 2009 as the result of an illness sustained during rescue and recovery efforts following the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center.

Officer Cortazzo had served with the Port Authority Police Department for almost 17 years. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Information courtesy of and Officer Down Memorial Page (


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