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AS WE APPROACH THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY of the terror attacks that occurred on 9/11/01, many of the FDNY firefighters I have talked to recently expressed their feelings about that day. Some of the firefighters have had enough and they and many of the family members don’t want to relive the nightmares of that terrible day again and again. Other family members will participate in all of the scheduled activities over several days.
All the first responders agree that 9/11 should be for the families of those who lost someone that day, whether it was in New York City, Arlington, VA, or Shanksville, PA. Because of the construction all over the World Trade Center site and security for the public officials who will be in attendance, first responders are scheduled to have a day of remembrance for themselves at a future time. First responders weren’t thrilled that there would be no place for them at the ceremonies. Someone said it will be held at another time. Another response was if not held on 9/11, what is the point?
After seeing the effects the death and destruction had on the members of the FDNY immediately after 9/11, I thought it would take several generations of firefighters to allow the department to finally move forward. With hard work, training, massive retirements, health and counseling issues still today for firefighters and family members, many things associated with 9/11 have progressed. They say time heals all wounds; I guess in this case many have moved on, but many are still affected. Never forget!
Among several documentaries coming out for the 10th anniversary are these: www.firefighter-thomasjfoley.com and www.projectrebirth.org. For the link to our book WTC: In Their Own Words on YouTube, see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8OQeDdDp8kg&feature=channel_video_title.
The letter at right was received just before the recent Firehouse Expo held in Baltimore, MD. For part of our 10th anniversary reflection on 9/11, we invited President Bush to the Expo to give us his remarks on hearing about the attacks and visiting the scene in New York and the other sites. Just before he declared war on our enemies, President Bush sat next to our Hal Bruno at the Annual Memorial for the Fallen Firefighters in Emmitsburg, MD, then returned to the White House and addressed the nation. Unfortunately, he couldn’t make the show, but sent the accompanying letter to mark the occasion.
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We are proud to announce the launch of MyFirehouseTraining.com, a state-of-the-art e-learning platform. This project was unveiled at the recent Firehouse Expo in Baltimore. When a team of first-responders comes together with best-in-class technology, amazing things happen. Training and communication improve. The focus turns more toward working together to better serve the public we are sworn to protect and serve.
MyFirehouseTraining will create a single point of access for training, communication, collaboration and professional development within a fire and law enforcement agency. See Scuttlebutt on page 16, go directly to MyFirehouseTraining.com or access the site through a link on Firehouse.com.
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