Posts Tagged remembering the tragedy of 9/11/01

Of interest … Remembering the attacks of 9/11/01

Excerpts from abcnews.go.com:

For students from elementary to high school, the Sept. 11 terrorist attack isn’t a memory. It’s history. A new HBO documentary that debuted on the event’s 18th anniversary treats it that way.

The necessity of her project, “What Happened on September 11,” struck filmmaker Amy Schatz when a third grade girl told her about a playdate where she and a friend Googled “Sept. 11 attacks.”

“When a child does that, what he or she finds are some pretty horrific images that are not necessarily appropriate for kids,” Schatz said on Tuesday. “So I felt a responsibility to try to fill that void and try to give kids something that isn’t horrifying and kind of fills in the gap.”

She worked with the Sept. 11 remembrance museum on the story, filming two men who work there giving presentations to third graders. Stephen Kern, who worked on the 62nd floor of the World Trade Center’s North Tower, talks about being evacuated. Matthew Crawford, whose father was a firefighter who died that day, discusses his experience. 

The film tells of Osama bin Laden and his activism that started with the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. But it never truly answers the whys. Maybe no one can.

The film doesn’t avoid some of the terrible images of the day: the second plane striking the World Trade Center and resultant fireball, the collapse of each tower and the giant clouds of debris that billowed through the canyons of city streets. 

As part of her research, she interviewed alumni of Stuyvesant High School near the World Trade Center site. But the memories of what they saw, heard and smelled that day — and the uncertainty of how they would get home from school — proved too raw. That’s why “In the Shadow of the Towers: Stuyvesant High on 9/11” is a separate film that premieres on HBO three hours after the first one.

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9/11 anniversary ceremony in Chicago

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Reflections about 9/11/01

This from John Tobin:

Rather than work on something I should be doing, I chose to do this instead … drats.

Wondering how Elgin, IL could be attached somehow to the September 11th attacks in New York? Attached is a post from another site. It tells the story of four Elgin firefighters (three now retired) and their trip to the East Coast on a mission to deliver a new fire truck. The truck that was built for the FDNY was almost ready to be delivered when the attacks occurred.

Along for the ride, were many very specially made cards of sympathy and concern from some very young (and some older too) citizens of Elgin.

When we were ready to leave Elgin for New York, the entire front of the cab was filled, not only with the cards, but posters and food items for the trip. It’s not too often that you get to see something like this and I will never forget it. I’ve never seen Elgin this united. On the way home after dropping the truck off, we stopped and posted them for all to see.

Read on:

Interesting comments on replacement vehicles for FDNY after 911-01.

There was an order for multiple aerials at Seagrave (SFA) that was trickling out of the factory in Wisconsin during that time frame. One of the most dedicated employees at SFA at that time was Glenn Bennett, a delivery driver with a huge heart. He delivered an aerial just before the attacks and was stranded there. As we all know, the airlines had been shut down.

I called him wondering what was up. He mentioned that he couldn’t get back and, for multiple reasons, SFA was having trouble getting a driver to bring the next aerial out. He said he was at the FDNY shops working on cleaning up rigs, helping install windshields and such to try and get rigs back in service. I immediately called SFA, and since I had driven rigs for them over the years, the dispatcher took me up on my offer … going out with a chase vehicle and three other firefighters from home. The truck was going to be ready on Saturday by noon. What started out as an urgent need to get the rig delivered, turned into a media goodwill tour of sorts to which many at SFA didn’t embrace. I was in trouble for a long time.

After getting the truck to IL late that evening, we set out for NY and drove straight thru. A dilemma was brewing, as the guys wanted to work at ground zero and we were going to arrive in the middle of the night. I wanted to meet up with Glenn (which never happened) and work at the shops, even if it was just sweeping the floors. We decided to take the rig to ground zero and leave at first light for the drop off point in South Plainfield. Not only were they in dire need of the truck, it was also loaded with spare parts. We were met at ground zero with interest and our group was interviewed on radio and even squawk box on CNN. At first light there was gridlock and quite a jaunt to get out of the city. The rig arrived safe and sound and we stayed two days to work “the pile”. As much as the grandstanding comments from some which hurt me very much, that was never our intent, as this turned out to be a creature in its own right. It was always about our FDNY brothers.

PS Glenn you were a hero in your own right. Rest in peace my dear friend.

Seagrave ladder truck being delivered to NYC immediately following the attacks of 9/11/01

All ready to leave EFD station #2….let’s roll.

Seagrave ladder truck being delivered to NYC immediately following the attacks of 9/11/01

Somewhere on I-80….Ohio perhaps.

Seagrave ladder truck being delivered to NYC immediately following the attacks of 9/11/01

Just arriving at ground zero trying to find a safe spot to park.

FDNY Ladder 3 pulled from the rubble of the 9/11 terrorist attacks

The now famous L-3 rolls passed. Interesting how the derbies hang off the truck from the offices of the world trade center…..inclusive of a cord and receiver from someone’s desk. L-3 is now on static display at the memorial. Wonder if ” Jeff we will not forget you” is still on the back door?

the World Trade Center on the night of 9/11/01

Taking it all in as a tower ladder still flows water and parts of what are left of the world trade center rise up high into the night sky.

the World Trade Center on the morning of 9/12/01

The night begins to give up it’s darkness and the complete picture will be in view soon.

aftermath of the attacks of 9/11/01 seen on 9/12/01

An FDNY officer overlooks “the pile” as it was to be called. At various points bucket brigades were set up to sift thru the derbies for anything that could be recovered. It was anyone’s guess what might be in the ground up derbies….. I have never since looked upon a plastic bucket the same as before 911.

Firefighter with new fire truck at the World Trade Center on 9/12/01

My chase driver readies our final route to safely deliver the rig, which was loaded with much needed spare parts for the rigs that would be salvaged. Later he would uncover a fire fighter on “the pile” and alert the FDNY team to remove the remains.

memorials outside a NYC fire station on 9/12/01

The look on the fire fighter’s face says it all….I didn’t get a chance to say hello….his “T” shirt said Las Vegas FD on the back. There were fire fighters from all over the country that came to New York after the attacks. Many were frustrated as there was nothing they could do…..I felt fortunate to have had a task to complete.

cards are posted at a fire station after the attacks of 9/11/01

Up go more cards from the Elgin school kids….not one was missed.

FDNY Ladder 11 one year after the attacks of 9/11/01

A year later some of us returned to visit where the truck ended up. Eleven Truck as it is called is in the Alphabet city section of New York, not far from where the world trade center stood. The burned ladder sign on the front of the station, was recovered off their wrecked truck.

FDNY Ladder 11 after the attacks of 9/11/01

The front mural says it all.

Firefighters with American Flag at ground zero on 9/12/01

They promised they would never forget

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9/11 Anniversary – stories

Excerpts from the DailyHerald.com:

Nothing could prepare them for the unthinkable. But as they stood by the rubble, a New York City fire chief introduced them to 16 acres of destruction that once was the World Trade Center. The New York chief laid out a few ground rules when the group arrived at ground zero. Only FDNY crews could move the body of one of their own.

“Your company goes and gets you and brings you out,” said Bob Hoff, now Carol Stream’s fire chief and then a district chief in Chicago,  of a point of pride in the fire service. “And that’s what New York did. They carried their own people out.”

A group of 87 firefighters from Chicago and the suburbs volunteered in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. They took 10- to 12-hour shifts at ground zero and tried to sleep on the sidewalk a few blocks away. And yet, despite the emotional toll, they call it an honor, a privilege to help their friends in New York.

Outside the city’s fire academy, they packed trucks and vans with gear, saws, bottles of water. By a stroke of luck, Chicago firefighters had switched into new breathing apparatus. Hoff and his crew brought the older style, the same kind used by a New York department devastated by the loss of lives and equipment in the collapse of the twin towers.

“We’d come back from the site and go to where we were stationed, and there would be nurses there just to clear your eyes out, all the dust in your eyes,” Hoff said.

Hoff also speaks of trying to find the good after a tragedy. When he was 5, his father, a Chicago battalion chief, was killed battling a fire in an apartment building on Valentine’s Day 1962.

“You can have grief, but your life goes on. You’ve got to make something positive out of things,” Hoff said. “I know every one of those guys who were killed were probably thinking that for their families, their wives.

After five days, they headed home to Chicago. Hoff wished they “could have done more.” Schneidwind was “heartbroken” to leave. Both knew the job was far from over.

thanks Dan

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