Shared by @itmikenypd I remember clear as day, as most of us can, the morning of 9/11. My mother woke me up in a panic and said "Michael turn on the TV, a plane just crashed into the World Trade Center." As I watched in horror, a second plane crashed into the towers and right at the very moment I realized these were no accidents but a heinous act of terrorism.
As the seconds turned into minutes and minutes into hours we realized that a family friend, Jose Pena, who worked in the twin towers, was missing. We posted up pictures, made several dozen phone calls and eventually decided to walk the streets of Manhattan in search of Jose. Our deepest fear grew with each passing moment... And seeing the hundreds of photos that were posted, our fear started to become a reality.
I remember stumbling upon a firehouse in Manhattan and locking eyes with a firefighter. We both knew that in that very moment we needed each other. I slowly walked over to him and without saying a single word, we embraced. We hugged what felt like an eternity and cried on each other's shoulders. I'll never forget that moment or that firefighter and I am thankful that heroes like him exist. People that are willing to put their lives on the line to save others. People that are willing to risk everything with no expectation of receiving anything in return.
Today we remember all of the men and woman who tragically lost their lives on 9/11. We also salute all of the men and woman who put on a uniform every day to serve others no matter how great a risk or how big a fear they may have.
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