NOTE: You might need the Flash plug-in installed
911 Tribute - 12 year old Riley Roth -
9/11 tribute song (original)
9/11 Babies: Children Who Lost Fathers Think Back
"Fallen Heroes (9-11)" Original Song
Heroism can take many forms. It can be as simple as staying with someone in their time of need.
Abraham Zalmanowitz worked on the Twin Tower's 27th floor. He was a computer programmer for a health insurer. Despite being someone so analytical, Abraham was very spiritual. He was an Orthodox Jew. A co-worker, Ed Bayea, was a quadriplegic. Ed's caretaker was on another floor and when she came for him, Mr. Zalmanowitz told her to leave. He promised to stay with Ed until other help came. Unfortunately, his body was never found.
May his soul have found peace and a resting place with God.
Dr. Antonio Dajer
How does one prepare for not only the 'unexpected', but the 'overwhelming'? How does one decide how to prioritize for the individual during a crisis when many need you and pull at you from all sides?
Being the closest hospital to the Trade Towers, staff had only minutes from the attacks until hundreds of people were in their halls and rooms, desperately needing help.
But most of you cannot imagine the actual scene at the hospital. Within hours of the attack, there were almost 800 patients in this small 170-bed hospital. They lost use of their telephone system, the emergency room lost power, steam, and gas, and sterilization of items was almost impossible.
Imagine trying to stay calm amidst this chaos, but that is what Dr. Dajer and his staff did, along with numerous medical staff from nearby hospitals who joined them at this hospital turned 'crisis center'. People were put wherever there was any room. Decisions were made quickly, but carefully. And the beaureaucratic redtape of paperwork was a thing of the past.
The hospital suffered great financial losses, along the way, but those involved in the efforts that day will always remember the good that was done among the horror that existed. And the abilities of one of its best, Dr. Antonio Dajer.
Food is necessary for life. And those who are chefs have a gift to make that necessity something special. Micahel Lomonaco was the Executive Chef at the Windows on the World restaurant on the 106th floor of the World Trade Center.
Only because he stopped at a Lenscrafters on a lower level, the morning of 9/11, did he escape the fate of 73 of his fellow restaurant workers. But instead of revelling in his good fortune to be alive, Michael, grief-stricken, jumped right in by preparing meals for the relief workers and by setting up a foundation for the families of missing restaurant workers.
Michael Benfante & John Cerqueira
What would bring together a former college football player and former altar boy, as a team? -- Well, 9/11 did.
Both men worked on the 81st floor of the north tower that day. When the attack occured, they joined others scurrying down stairs to safety. But when they came to the 61st floor, they could see behind a glass door, Tina Hansen, 41 who was sitting next to a folded wheelchair. They rushed inside the room, strapped her to the chair, and took off with her.
Whether it was more 'faith in strength' or 'strength in faith', is immaterial. Both worked as they should, as a team, to rescue someone in need.
In the Arms of the Angels: A September 11 Memorial
(Over 1 million views on You Tube)
"Above and beyond the call of duty' was a phrase foreign to George Howard. A Port Authority police officer, he had been at the World Trade Center in 1993 when the bomb went off. He saved many lives, including those of over 60 children who had been trapped in an elevator. For that, he received a medal, but shrugged-off any praise, since he felt he was only doing his job.
George was off duty on 9/11 when the World Trade Center was struck, once again. When he heard the news, he rushed to the scene to offer assistance. But, tragically, his was one of the bodies discovered among the ruins of the north tower. One can only imagine how much he did before his death to save others.
President Bush, given George's police shield by Arlene Howard (his mother), held it up at the 9/20/01 speech to the American people. Mr. Bush said, "This is my reminder of lives that ended and a task that does not end."
Dominique was a corporate trainer when she arrived early on 9/11 at the Twin Towers to prepare. The night before, she attended her first day of graduate school. Her nominator, Dr. Marie D. Moore, says that Dominique "... was a special child, daughter, friend, adult, educator, and human being".
Kerry knows first-hand that people's pets are part of their family.
A voice in the dark to guide one into the light. That's what we all hope for, in time of a crisis. Well, that is what Mr. Ho'opi'i provided during the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon.
Isaac, a Pentagon Defense Protective Officer, heard the news that a plane had crashed into the Pentagon. Without hesitation, he drove to the scene. He carried a number of people out of the building to safety. He then went back to the depths where there was no light but many calling out for help. He called to them to follow his voice and a number of them did, getting outside to the light of day. Isacc worked for approx. a day and a half at the scene.
Mr. Ho'opi'i received the Medal of Valor from the Department of Defense. For a non-military person, this is quite an honor. One that was well received.
'You've got to have heart', they say. And Kathy Mazza had a big one.
Kathy spent her life in the service of others. She spent 10 years as a cardiothoracic nurse. Because of her work with children, she had a photo taken with Nancy Reagan.
In 1992, Kathy had open heart surgery to close a hole in it. She displayed much humor through the ordeal.
After marrying her husband, John Delosh, a police officer, she became a Port Authority officer. Among other accomplishments, Kathy trained over 500 people to use defribilators. In 1999, she was honored as New York City's Baasic Life Support Provider of the Year. The honor took place in the Twin Towers.
On 9/11, Kathy was in Jersey City. When she learne dof the attacks, she rushed with staff to Tower One of the Trade Center and up to the 29th floor. There she and her staff guided folks down to the Mezzanine, but learned that the exits were unusable. Instead of panicing, Kathy shot out windows to provide an escape for the folks that they were rescuing.
The town of Oyter Bay, where she was raised, named a street in honor.
Students graduate from college, often knowing little of the the realities of life off-campus or even more so, of the darker side of the world in which we live.
Shaharam Hasemi received the LaGuardia Memorial Association Award from when he graduated from the LaGuardia Community College. The award was not only for his academic achievements, but for his heroic actions during 9/11.
On 9/11, Shaharan was interning at the Bank of New York, located on Wall Street. When he saw what happened and injured folks wandering around, he brought some into the bank's lobby. Then, he went toward the scene itself, asking if he could help in some way. A firefighter gave him a firefighter's jacket and then blessed him with the sign of the cross. He helped in putting out fires until a building collapse injured him and he was taken to a hospital. There, Jewish doctors treated Mr. Hasemi.
Shaharam felt blessed and saw how the three religions, Muslim, Christian, and Judaism came together in a time of great need.
When all is said and done, we must remember that there is good in all peoples, just as there is bad. And if we can focus on that thought and act upon it, this world will be a better place.
Dr. Nijher Singh
There is good and bad among all groups of people. Unfortunately, too many of us paint races, religions, or orientations with a broad brush.
When 9/11's terror occured, Nijher was a surgical resident at the Maimonides Hospital in New York. He and several other doctors rushed to the scene to offer assistance. They rounded up supplies as best they could and set up the area's first triage center at the site of one of the towers. He also set up with others a morgue in a building lobby. He worked many hours there before leaving to sleep for only 1 hour before resuming hospital duties.
Yet, Dr. Singh, born in America and a member of the Sikh religion, faced numerous incidents of harassment from folks who felt he was a Muslim and as such responsible for the acts of terror. Aside from the fact that not all Muslims are bad, Sikhism is different. In fact it is the 5th largest religion in the world.
Dr. Singh pointed out that the terror of 9/11 did not discriminate.
are hard-pressed to think of a single event that created so many, spontaneous, incredible, everyday, Special Heroes.
YOU WILL FIND STORIES OF 9/11 HEROES AND HEROINES throughout this page.
I pray that we all can one day live in peace and focus on what unites us, instead of differences.
SEPTEMBER 11, 2010
We learned that while America was a 'Superpower', as with Superman, it was not invincible. That while so many of us believed in 'Truth, Justice, and the American Way', so many around the world did not.
I have seen and heard of countless acts of goodness and heroism, especially through this website, SpecialHeroes.com. And, I ask that you invite your friends, family, social networking buddies, and clergy to visit us. And, to contribute short or long pieces about the many heroes/ heroines living among us.
I also ask that during this very trying time in our country's history that we do not lose site of what makes our land great. That we remember to respect and welcome those who are different from us. That we offer others opportunites when we can. That do not trample on the rights of others. That we allow others to worship and embrace their religion, just as we enjoy the freedom, ourselves, to worship as we see fit. That we do not discriminate. Yet, that we hold ourselves and others accountable for actions taken. That we practice basic decency and perform acts of charity. That sometimes doing without, so that another can survive and prosper, is not a bad thing. That when faced with the opportunity to be heroes and to do the right thing, that we do not falter.
As Americans, we are blessed to live in a great land, made even greater by the diversity and, yet, unity of our fellow citizens.
The following poem is Copyright 2003 by Russell Irving
IN YOUR HONOR - 9/11 Special Heroes
In Your Honor, I will slowly widen my eyes
The following poem is Copyright 2003 by Russell Irving
JUST WAIT AND SEE - A 9/11 Bystander
and Survivor's Tale
I remember where I was when our world went out of control.
Jonathan C. Fruendt, MD
So much attention regarding 9/11 focuses on the World Trade Towers. However, tragedy also struck the Pentagon. And heroes were there that day.
Dr. Fruendt was in an office when the plane hit the building. He found his way into the health clinic where he offered his expertise. He was directed to the courtyard's new 'triage center'.
In the courtyard, he saw folks with burns, folks shaken up, folks with various injuries, and folks who simply wanted to leave the area.
During the day, his location changed with where he was needed. But he stayed. And helped. And for that, we thank him.
Betty Ann Ong
How often do we buy into sterotypes. Too often. And one of those has to do with flight attendants, formerly known as stewardesses. They are thought of, pardon the pun, 'flighty' and maybe not very smart.
Ms. Ong lived in Andover, MA and had been a flight attendant for 4 years. She often went above and beyond what was called for, while interacting with passengers, be they old, very young, or otherwise in need of comfort or assistance.
On 9/11, she was on an American Airlines flight leaving Boston, headed to Los Angeles. Within minutes of the hijacking, Betty contacted the airline's reservation office, by telephone, from the rear of the plane.
Ms. Ongis certainly earned 'wings' and much thanks, that tragic day.
Turning tragedy into something special is not an easy task. Yet, Lisa Beamer has done just that.
Lisa created the Todd M. Beamer Foundation to help children cope with dramatic tragedy in their life. She used money received in the form of donations to establish this worthwhile cause.
Lisa has taken her own tragedy and used the energy created from it, to do great good.
What do you say when a hard-working, immigrant saves lives? Simply "Thank you' And I am glad that you are here in America.
Jan is Polish and had been a plumber. In America, he worked as a plumber for some time at wages so low that you would be ashamed to know that people could be taken advantage of in that way.
After marrying Nadia, he became a window cleaner for Union Local 32 BJ. - A quiet man, Jan began working at the WTC.
On 9/11, Mr. Demczur was working in the North Tower and in an elevator with 5 others, when the plane struck the building. The elevator plummeted, finally stopping still high up. Jan knew something must be done or else they were doomed. He used his squeegee to open the elevator doors. Facing a drywall, he and the others took turns chopping away at it with the squeegee. That trusted sueegee's long blade finally broke. But Jan did not give up. He and the others used the handle until a hole less than 2 feet in diameter was made. They went through it and firefighters tried guiding them to safety. But Jan continued to aid others first.
When all was said and done, the squeegee manufacturer flew Mr. Demczur to Nevada in order to speak about his experince, at a convention for window cleaners.
Surviving such an ordeal has not been easy for Jan. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family.
I Believe - A 9/11 Tribute
(Over 4 million views on You Tube)