An FDNY widow whose husband died when a tree limb crushed her on a family vacation says she is disappointed with the fire department for giving her a portion of what the family deserves.
“They’re parading their bodies through town, closing the streets for their hero, saying they’re going to ‘take care of the family’ and ‘that’s what we do. We’re FDNY,'” ‘” Angela Schudin recently told The Post.
“And then it’s really about how the FDNY … takes care of the families on the back end.”
She was killed while driving with her wife and two sons at a North Carolina resort on June 17, after her husband, Casey Schudin, had been on the job for 16 and a half years.
His widow has since filed suit against the Biltmore estate in Asheville where he died.
But she’s also battling with New York City’s Fire Pension Board, which manages the money a widow receives when her husband dies.
To qualify for a full pension, an FDNY firefighter must have had 20 years on the job.
The average annual pension payment for this type of FDNY firefighter was about $108,000 in 2018, according to a study with some of the most recent data available and published by the Empire Center in 2019.
Angela says that along with other city agencies, the FDNY allows its members to add any previous working hours from other local governments in the state to increase their department’s pensions.
Her husband previously worked as a lifeguard for Nassau County on Long Island, earning enough government time with that job to make it to his FDNY pension for 20 years, she said.
But such time would only count toward his FDNY pension if it was earned with a relevant department, such as the NYPD, as stipulated in state law, a city representative told The Post.
The city’s Fire Pensions Board sent questions to City Hall, which issued a statement.
“Our thoughts are with Ms Skudin and all the friends and family of firefighter Skudin,” the statement said. “The City and the New York City Fire Pension Fund are working to assist Ms. Scudin in any way possible to secure the benefits she receives under state law.”
Under the law, spouses of deceased firefighters who are less than 20 years on the job are eligible to receive only what their partners have contributed to the pension fund, plus their average annual salary in the three years prior to their death. are eligible to receive three times the lump sum benefit of Rs. officials said.
The widow said the lump sum amount of Casey’s contribution would be about $111,000.
His salary in the three years before his death was approximately $125,000, which would bring that amount before taxes to approximately $375,000.
Angela reached out to then-State Sen. Todd Kaminsky (De-Nassau County) for help.
Kaminsky introduced a bill last week to ensure that the Skudin family receives KC’s full pension.
“He was a true hero, and the tragic circumstances of his passing really forced everyone in Albany to come together next year to ensure that the law giving his family his pension is passed,” Kaminsky told Casey. said about.
Kaminsky then resigned from the state Senate on Friday to take a private position, leaving the bill’s future uncertain.
Meanwhile, Scudin said she is dealing with an emotional and physical fallout from that tragic day.
She was the only member of her family who was not shocked by a tree falling on the roof of their car. He said his 10-year-old son is still battling a spinal fracture and other medical problems.
Then there are the emotional scars.
“My youngest can’t even talk about his father,” she said. “They were incredibly close. They were best friends.
“It’s disturbing, but it really shows their true colors,” she said of the FDNY’s behavior. “It shows what their bureaucracy is.
“And this time, you know, I won’t let them beat up the little guy. I’m going to fight for everything that belongs to my husband and everything he’s earned, in his name, in his honor.”