Honor sought for US soldier who died in Bronx fire rescue

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NEW YORK (AP) - U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer wants the Army to posthumously honor a U.S. soldier and native of Ghana who raced repeatedly into the worst city blaze in decades to rescue four people.

Twenty-eight-year-old National Guard member Emmanuel Mensah died in the Bronx building where the Dec. 28 fire claimed a dozen other lives.

The Democratic senator from New York calls Mensah "a soldier, an immigrant, a first-generation American, a New Yorker" - but above all, "a hero."

He perished inside the five-story building where he lived before joining the military. He was home for the holidays. Fire officials said the blaze was started by a 3-year-old boy playing with a gas stove.

Excluding the Sept. 11 attacks, the fire was the worst in city history since the 1990 Bronx nightclub blaze that killed 87.

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