"Overwhelming" Support at Capt. Porcari's Calling Hours

By Kelly McCarthy
By Jamie Hoskins

January 26, 2013 Updated Jan 28, 2013 at 11:24 AM EDT

Owego, NY (WBNG Binghamton) Friends and family sharing memories and celebrating the life of a fallen hero.

Hundreds show up to remember Owego Fire Captain Matthew Porcari.

Porcari died battling a house fire on Chamberlain Road in Newark Valley Monday night.

During the home attack, the first floor of the home collapsed and Porcari fell into the basement.

Calling hours were held in the Owego Middle school auditorium from 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. on Saturday.

Family friends say Porcari is remembered as someone who helped his community and everyone he knew.

Owego Asst. Fire Chief, Jim Morris, says the response has been overwhelming.

"Tons of pictures. We've got videos going of Matt in his remembrance. Flowers, you wouldn't imagine the flowers. Just again another part that's been overwhelming," said Morris.

Uniforms from all over the nation were spotted at the gathering.

Morris said he spoke with firefighters from California, Texas, and New Jersey.

But the majority of people who came to show their appreciation are from Porcari's hometown of Owego, NY.

"Such a good person to go so early it's hard to even get your words out. But he's going to be missed and would just like the family to know that we love him, we all loved him and we're all praying for them," said Ryan Anderson, a childhood friend.

More than 60 hotel rooms at several Owego hotels have been donated for out of town servicemen.

Most of the anonymous donations came from the facebook page, "Prayers and Support for Owego Fire Department."