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Officer James W. Parham


Officer Parham's Act of Heroism

Over 400 first responders lost their lives on September 11, 2001. Heroically performing their sworn duty, these firefighters, members of the NYPD and PAPD, and numerous other rescue workers will forever be remembered for their sacrifice.

My Hero

James W. Parham, a Port Authority Police Officer, was a fallen hero at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001.


The joy of being the older brother is that you can do whatever you want simply because you're older. Or at least that's the way James Parham, 33, used to justify the pranks he pulled on his younger brother. "When I was about 7 he got me to stick a coat hanger in the light socket," said Kevin Parham. "All I remember was the hallway looking blue to me and him sitting there tickled to death."

Of course, not all the pranks between the two were so painful. The boys would race one another home from school determined to win control of the television. But big brother always managed to come out on top, mainly because of a scheme. "He'd take the knob off the television so that even if I beat him, I couldn't turn to my channel," Kevin Parham said. "It was stuck on his show, 'Little House on the Prairie.' "

But Mr. Parham the prankster eventually became Mr. Parham the proud United States marine, the proud father of a 3-year- old, Resa, and the respected law enforcement officer. Shortly before he disappeared, he had been promoted to an academy instructor for the Port Authority. "He had so much to be proud of," Kevin Parham said. "But he'd give up everything to help somebody. He was always on the job."

Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on November 6, 2001.
Information courtesy of the Remember 9/11/2001 memorial site on


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