A veteran emergency medical services worker was killed while taking her lunch break on Thursday in what police are calling an ‘unprovoked attack.’
Alison Russo-Elling, an EMS lieutenant for the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) was fatally stabbed by a man in Queens.
Russo-Elling was attacked around 2.20pm on Thursday, about half a block away from Station 49 in Astoria.
Russo was reportedly grabbing food on her lunch break when a man ran up to her on the sidewalk and stabbed her multiple times.
She was rushed to Mount Sinai Queens Hospital, where she died from her injuries.
Her attacker was identified by police as Peter Zisopoulos.
Zisopoulos, 34, had no prior arrests. He was hospitalized but never charged after making violent threats against Asians in 2018, a police source told the New York Daily News.
Russo-Elling was a 24-year FDNY veteran. She started as a EMT in 1998, and was quickly promoted to paramedic in 2002. She was promoted to lieutenant in 2016.
The FDNY also confirmed that Russo-Elling was one of the first responders to help with rescue and recovery efforts after the 9/11 attacks at the World Trade Centers in 2001.
Russo-Elling is the 1,158th member of the FDNY to be killed in the line of duty.
‘I worked with EMTs for years,’ Adams added. ‘I’ve seen what they do up close. Their sacrifice is immeasurable.’
New York Governor Kathy Hochul ordered all flags to fly at half-mast on Friday in honor of Russo-Elling.
‘Our hearts are with her family as we honor her life and remember her as a hero,’ the governor stated. ‘I know all New Yorkers are grateful for her service over more than two decades with FDNY and as a World Trade Center first responder.’
Russo-Elling lived on Long Island and is survived by her daughter and her parents.