Wednesday, September 11, 2013

When everyone else ran out, they were running in.

It's been twelve years. Twelve years since Muslim terrorists murdered nearly 3,000 American men, women and children here in our own country via a cowardly sneak attack involving hijacked aircraft.

Hell, you know the story, so I won't repeat it. And I'm not going to post pictures of the planes hitting the buildings, either. You can find those anywhere.

What I want to do today is recognize the sacrifice made by just a few of them many, many heroes of that day--the brave First Responders who fought their way in to the World trade Center site and worked to save other people's lives until they finally lost their own.
I don't have much to say about these heroes. The following pictures give you an idea of what we lost that day.

On September 11, 2001, 411 emergency workers who responded to the scene died as they attempted to rescue people and fight fires. The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) lost 341 firefighters and 2 FDNY paramedics. The New York City Police Department lost 23 officers. The Port Authority Police Department lost 37 officers, and 8 additional EMTs and paramedics from private EMS units were killed.

These Heroes had families. These Heroes had friends. These Heroes had names.
Let me tell you about just a few of them.

NYPD Officer Moira Smith was the first officer to get on the radio and report the first jet strike on the Twin Towers. She stayed and worked to free victims until the towers came down. She was 38 and left behind a husband--also NYPD--and a two-year-old daughter.

Fire Marshal Ronald Bucca didn't have to enter the towers that day. It wasn't his job. But he couldn't ignore all of those victims, and he was one of the firefighters who'd made it all the way to the 78th floor of the South Tower--one floor below the impact area--when the tower collapsed.

Also killed on that day was FBI Special Agent Leonard Hatton. He wasn't even tasked with responding to this disaster but he did. He entered the World Trade Center towers to help evacuate people even though it wasn't his job. He was trapped and killed when the tower collapsed.

And like Special Agent Hatton, Secret Service Master Special Officer Craig Miller rushed in to help, running towards the nightmare instead of away from it. He also gave his life trying to evacuate people when the towers fell.

And there was another LEO killed on that day, one who hasn't gotten much attention or honor since he was off duty and because he wasn't in New York City.

US Fish and Wildlife Service Refuge Manager Richard Guadagno was aboard Flight 93, which crashed and burned in a Pennsylvania field while enroute to another target in Washington DC. Richard was a sworn law enforcement officer, and we can only wonder what he'd have been able to do had he been allowed to carry his firearm aboard that airliner on that fateful day. Perhaps there'd have been one less crashed airliner. Sadly, we'll never know.

Additionally, Sirius, a Port Authority Bomb Detection K9 was killed on that day. Some may say they he was "just a dog", but he was also a police officer and a partner to Officer David Lim. Officer Lim made it out that day. Sirius did not.

These were some of the best, most selfless men and women that America has produced. They died trying to save others, rushing in again and again so that others might live. Never forget them. And NEVER let it happen again.


  1. Their lives had so much purpose. The tragedy that ended those lives was so utterly senseless.

  2. I haven't forgotten, nor will I let anyone else forget it. Not on my watch.

  3. two or three days after the attack I ran into a coworker at our NJ office. He worked in our office in the second tower (to fall). He was limping badly and I asked him why. His response was that he'd torn pretty much all the muscles in his legs running away when the towers started collapsing - he'd never run so hard in his life.

    Then he said, "And as hard as I, and everyone else were running away, police and firefighters were running into it!" Then he got very emotional.

    Police and firefighters who worked at and near Ground Zero are still dying and the numbers are probably increasing. Lost a good neighbor and a great guy just two weeks ago. Professional firefighter from a one of the neighboring cities that ring NYC who'd worked Ground Zero for a week. Fibrosis and cancer everywhere.

    A close relative works with COPD patients. They've lost 3 firefighters just this year already. Fibrosis and cancer.

    All those men were in their 50s. All worked Ground Zero.

    If you are inlcined to pray, please pray for those who serve.


  4. And without in any way detracting from the valor or bravery of those intrepid heroes highlighted in your posting (nor any not mentioned in your posting), I now make mention of Captain William Harry Thompson, Sergeant Mitchell Wallace, and Sergeant Thomas Jurgens, all Court Officers in the employ of the New York State Unified Court System.


    The World Trade Center was not their post of duty, but, being only a few blocks away when the planes hit the towers, they sprinted down to render assistance.

    And there is no doubt that they saved some lives in the process.


    I hope and pray that the rescued individuals were worth the trade!

  5. Anonymous6:33 PM

    May God bless them all.


  6. Last night I briefly stopped my channel surfing to watch some show about the morning of 9/11/01 and it happened to be shortly after the south tower, #2, the first to collapse, had fallen. The NYFD radio person kept keying and repeating, "Any unit operational in tower 2 report." Silence. Again and again.

  7. Anonymous12:54 PM

    I will never forget.