Friday, September 11, 2009

A September 11th Revelation And Tribute

I was scheduled to go to breakfast at Windows on the World in the North Tower of the World Trade Center on 11 September, 2001. Later, I was to attend a meeting in the building, with an associate of one of my clients, to discuss a new project.

TheSpecialOne convinced me to call room service for breakfast instead and as it turned out we were making love when American Airlines Flight 11 slammed into the North Tower at 8:46 AM.

Up until now I've shared this story only with a small circle of friends. Eight years later, for the first time, it feels Right to make the story public.

This is not, though, a day to focus on my good fortune. Nor is it, by extension, a day to rally against the failures of the Administration of George W. Bush. As for the conspiracy theorists who are dedicated to rewrite history, I have not and never will validate your idiocy with a response. Selah.

Today I'm paying tribute to 10 of the victims of the 9-11 attacks.

While that's less than 1/2 of 1% of those who were lost that day, it's my mission to be sure the people who were lost are remembered, not just the event.

Raymond M. Downey, of Deer Park, New York, was 63-years-old.

He was a member of the New York Fire Department serving as Deputy Chief of Special Operations Command.

Raymond had a 39-year career with FDNY and is recognized as the "Father" of modern Urban Search and Rescue techniques.

He was the recipient of five individual medals for valor and 16 unit citations.

Raymond died at the World Trade Center, his body was never recovered.

He was survived by his wife Rosalie. According to his obituary he was the, "father of Joseph and Lynn, Marie and Girolamo Tortorici, Chuck and Melissa, Ray and Christine, Kathy and Brian Ugalde" and well as the "Cherishd poppy of Gina Marie, Nicolette Rose, Peter Raymond, Joseph James, Connor Joseph, Olivia Faith and Kayla Rae."

LeRoy Wilton Homer Jr., or Marlton, New Jersey, was 36 years old.

He worked for United Airlines and was the First Officer aboard United Flight 93 that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

LeRoy was a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy.

He attained the rank of Captain while on active duty in the Air Force before receiving an honorable discharge in 1995. As a reservist he went on to attain the rank of Major.

LeRoy served in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

He was survived by his wife Melodie and his daughter Laurel.

Brian G. Ahearn of Huntington, New York was 43-years-old.

He was a Lieutenant with the New York Fire Department, assigned to Engine Company 230 in Brooklyn.

Lt. Ahearn led a crew of five men into the World Trade Center; they perished when the North Tower collapsed.

Brian was survived by his wife Deborah and his children Lauren and Christopher.

Craig Amundson of Fort Belvoir, Virginia was 28-years-old

He was a United States Army Specialist, assigned to the Deputy Chief of Staff of Personnel - U.S. Army. Craig worked as a Multimedia Illustrator.

Craig was assigned to and died at the Pentagon.

He was survived by his wife Amber Ann and children, Elliot Reed and Charlotte Marion.

Craig is buried at Arlington National Cemetery.

Garnet Edward (Ace) Bailey was 53-years-old, he lived in Lynnfield, Massachusetts.

Garnet was, at one time, a professional hockey player and, at the time of his death, he was working as the Director of Pro Scounting for the Los Angeles Kings of the National Hockey League.

He was a passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 175 that crashed into the South Tower of the World Trade Center.

Ace was survived by his wife Katherine and his son Todd.

Carolyn Mayer Beug, of Santa Monica, California, was 48-years-old.

She worked as a filmmaker and video producer.

Carolyn was a passenger aboard American Flight 11 that crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Her mother Mary Alice Wahlstrom was also aboard.

Carolyn was survived by her husband John, twin daughters Lauren and Lindsey and a son, Nicky.

She was returning home from taking her daughters to college at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Jonathan Briley was 43-years-old.

Jonathan worked as an Audio Technician at Windows on the World on the 106th floor of World Trade Center Tower 1 and is widely believed to be "the falling man."

He was survived by his wife Hillary.

At the time of his death Jonathan worshiped at First Baptist Church of Elmsford New York, where he was ordained as a Deacon on March 11th 2001 and served as a armor bearer for his father and pastor Rev. Alexander Briley Jr.

Jamie Lynn Fallon, of Woodbridge, Virginia, was 23-years-old.

Jamie, a petty officer third class, was a storekeeper assigned to the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations Support Activity at the Pentagon.

Jamie left behind a 9-month old son named Kahleb.

Andrew Garcia, of Portola Valley, California, was 62-years-old. To his family he was known as Sonny.

Andrew was a passenger on United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

He was returning home from a business trip.

Andrew was survived by his wife Dorothy, a son, Andy, two daughters, Kelly and Audrey, and one granddaughter, Madison.

Karen A. Martin was a Flight Attendant on American Airlines Flight 11 which crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center.

She lost her life trying to fend off the terrorists from entering the cockpit and assuming control of Flight 11.

Karen was 40-years-old and resided in Danvers, Massachusetts.

Both her parents had passed away and Karen was dedicated to keeping her remaining family close and helping her younger sister, who has learning difficulties, become educated and self-sufficient.


RecycleCindy said...

Wow what a touching and cool way to to pay tribute to 10 of the victims of the 9/11 attacks by sharing their story with us. Very special and I'm sure their loved ones are honored by your post. We must never forget that day. Thanks for sharing each of those 10 people's stories with me.

Unknown said...

A thoughtful way to remember. Were these people you knew? Regardless, I think if other people chose to remember 10 additional and different people it would be a good thing to do. For me what you have done is 'personalised' a news event.