9/11

Nearly eighteen years after the Sept. 11 attacks, New York City firefighter Michael Haub has finally been laid to rest. Family and friends gathered in New York City's Franklin Square to remember him.

Among those attending the ceremony was 53-year-old firefighter Andrew Mulchinski.

"Mike was the kind of guy who would give you the shirt off his back. He would do anything for anybody, whether he knew you or not," Mulchinski says.

The two were volunteer firefighters together at the Roslyn Highlands Fire Department in Long Island, New York.

Miami Beach Fire Chief Virgil Fernandez has vivid memories of being a first responder at Ground Zero after the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. 

The September 11th Victim Compensation Fund is cutting its payouts in half for some and by as much as 70 percent for others, as the fund faces a surge in claims ahead of its expiration date in December 2020.

The fund, which was opened in 2011, compensates for deaths and illnesses due to exposure to toxins at the sites of the Sept. 11 attacks. The $7.3 billion fund has already paid out about $5 billion to 21,000 claimants. But it still has about 19,000 additional unpaid claims to address.

There were somber ceremonies in New York City, in Shanksville, Pa., and at the Pentagon on Tuesday as President Trump, along with survivors and families of those killed on this date, remembered Sept. 11, 17 years after the terrorist attack.

Trump, speaking at the Flight 93 National Memorial, said, "A piece of America's heart is buried in these grounds, but in its place has grown a new resolve to live our lives with the same grace and courage as the heroes of Flight 93."

Hollywood Firefighters
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

At the entrance to Hollywood's Fire Station 31, on Hollywood Blvd., sits a tall statue of a fireman, in full gear, holding a baby. Below are names of local firefighters from the department who have died in the line of duty and after decades of service.

During a ceremony to remember the 9/11 terrorist attacks Tuesday, members of Hollywood's current fire rescue department unveiled 10 new names added to that memorial.

Phil Savery knew all of them well.

U.S. judge cites ‘shameful’ FBI delays in making public 9/11 records

Mar 2, 2017

A Miami federal judge Tuesday excoriated the FBI for what she called its “shameful” delays in making public certain records about the bureau’s 9/11 Review Commission.

“It is distressing to see the length to which a private citizen must go” to obtain records under the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA],” said U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga. “It’s quite shocking frankly.”

In the aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, many beloved public spaces were abruptly closed or had their access severely restricted. At the time, the public generally resigned itself to the new restrictions as a necessary evil in a time of war.

Fifteen years later, the public has stopped noticing. In some cases, such as scenic overlooks at certain dams, the government spent millions on new roads and bridges to allow the public access from less risky positions. But in other places, the restrictions remain, and it's the public space itself that has faded from view.

Before Scott Kopytko joined the New York City Fire Department, he worked as a commodities broker in the South Tower at the World Trade Center. On Sept. 11, he rushed up the stairs of his old office building, trying to save lives with his fellow firefighters before the towers fell.

"He went to work, and he never came back," says his stepfather, Russell Mercer.

Danny Nolan was the first man to swing a wrecking ball in Manhattan in 25 years. Wrecking balls hadn't been allowed on the island for a very simple reason: The buildings are much too close together to allow a huge ball to swing back and forth.

An exception was made for Nolan because he, and the other construction workers of the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 14, were "working the pile" — hauling away what was left in the World Trade Center towers after the Sept. 11 attacks.

Fifteen years after the attacks of Sept. 11, Americans have grown aware not only of the danger of terrorism but also of the reality that their nation is far less white, Christian and European than it used to be.

"Culturally, we're a country of Bollywood and bhangra and tai chi and yoga and salsa and burritos and halal and kosher," says Diana Eck, professor of comparative religion at Harvard University and author of A New Religious America.

Bretagne, a 16-year-old golden retriever and the last known remaining Sept. 11 search dog, was euthanized Monday in Texas.

Wilson Sayre

At a solemn ceremony today, the North Campus of Miami Dade College dedicated a new memorial to honor those lost in the attacks on 9/11. 

The memorial is about 10 feet high. On top of the base, which is supposed to represent the Pentagon, there is a granite column with three sides. Each side has the name of a place that was attacked on Sept. 11 along with a quote of remembrance. On top of the column is a two foot piece of what looks like an I-beam with a large nail sticking out of it.