Quiet ceremonies honoring the hundreds of firefighters killed at the World Trade Center were held across the city yesterday, as a large number of Bravest chose to mourn the third anniversary of 9/11 away from Ground Zero.
While many firefighters still chose to pay their respects at the site where their brothers were killed, others observed the anniversary of the greatest tragedy ever to hit the FDNY privately. At 100th Street and Riverside Drive, hundreds gathered at the Firemen's Monument. "We want it to be more private," said Capt. John Mack.
The names of all 343 firefighters who died on 9/11 were read aloud, and a bell was rung after each nname. Earlier, FDNY Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta stopped by the monument to lay a wreath before heading to the ceremony at Ground Zero. At St. Patrick's Cathedral, Edward Cardinal Egan spoke directly to friends and kin of fallen firefighters at a 10 a.m. mass.
Egan praised New York's bravest for selflessly putting their lives on the line for others. "You protect us even in the most horrific conditions," he said.