we have not forgotten

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10 Comments on we have not forgotten

  1. lest we forget …

    Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens
    Sean Smith
    Glen Doherty
    Tyrone Woods

    R.I.P. ~ September 11, 2012

    12
  2. I lost 342 brothers on 9/11/01.

    Yes, more people died that day, many, many more, many of them chronicled above, and I felt for that tragedy too, but I do not have the same kinship with them because I have not known their dangers.

    A firefighter is habituated to running IN when everyone ELSE is running OUT. We ignore alarms, run past danger signs, shore up collapsing structures or overturned vehicles, smash though glass, seek the darkest smoke and the hottest flames, because that’s where the problem is. That’s where the workplace is. Even now, years later, I and many like me do not respond like “Normal” people when a fire alarm goes off other than to look for the problem, and will even stupidly reach into a burning car without turnouts or Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus to feel if there’s a person in there who needs our help.

    We’re kind of stupid that way, it’s ingrained from the job.

    And the reason for all that?

    Because that’s where the victims are.

    You learn some things when you deal with this, like how children tend to go hide because they don’t think the danger of the fire is as bad as the danger of parental wrath, so you learn to look in closets in a “room and contents” burn. You learn that people in extremis will do whatever they can to try to save their life if they don’t have help, like turn on a bathtub in the middle of a fire and submerge themselves in it. You learn that people can break their own fingers and peel all their own nails back in a desperate attempt to escape when they encounter a concrete basement wall instead of the door they thought they would find, and the pain of the fire drives them to try to claw their way through it. You find that you sometimes can’t recognize a human who died in a fire as such because they’ve had their arms and legs burnt down to flippers and whatever flesh and bone remains to them is a similar color and consistency as the debris around them.

    You realize what a terrible thing death by fire can be.

    Men and women come to firefighting for many different reasons. Some for adventure, some for adrenaline, some from fascination, some from relations who do it and talked them into it, some to “prove” something, some for a paycheck, some to serve their fellow man, some because they knew someone who died tragically and were motivated to save others from the same fate. I, personally, wanted to have a revolving red light that let me go through intersections while everyone ELSE had to pull over, and wrote that on my application. The Chief thought it was funny, but I was only half-kidding.

    I was very young.

    As are most when they start.

    You get that kicked out of you pretty early on, though. It’s a deadly serious business where not only are YOU in danger, but your actions OR INACTIONS can be the difference between life and death to civilian and fellow firefighter alike. Cowards are not welcome, but neither are glory seekers who try to rush in and be the hero. Either can get you killed. And never mind earthly courts, I would not like to stand before God and explain that someone died because I was afraid.

    But you DO have that right.

    No firefighter, no police officer, even (to a lesser extent) no soldier can be given an ORDER to sacrifice himself. If a man believes the danger too great, he can refuse. He may face trial, opprobrium, expulsion, and shame, and in the case of a soldier, court martial…but he will be alive.

    If ANYONE had a right to do that, it was the 9/11 firefighters.

    Because the first plane strike was WITNESSED by a fire crew who was not far away at the time, which was actually documented by a film crew on a ride-along, they KNEW the North tower had been struck by a commercial airliner, with all the hazards that entailed. They could SEE the flames high up on the building as they drove, while feeding a constant stream of information to dispatch to mobilize other resources. They could SEE the debris ejected from the strike before they even got there.

    And these were New York firefighters, the cream of the crop, well-versed in high angle firefighting and JP1-fueled aircraft fires, and KNEW this was BOTH.

    And they proceeded ANYWAY.

    They found the elevators burnt and useless, the lobby destroyed from the strike many dozens of floors above them, found they could not communicate with the higher floors, and did not run.

    They packed up with hoses and air and started ascending, 70, 80, 90 floors in stairwells.

    None of them had a death wish. I recall one of them saying in one of the many interviews, “We didn’t think it would be that big a deal. We were gonna go up, and put out the fire. That’s what we do.” Tough to do with a shattered water system and no way to get up there with heavy loads that doesn’t take hours, but they tried anyway.

    I cannot chronicle the entire event here, much of it is well-known anyway. If you haven’t seen it, however, the film crew I referred to is at this link. It’s two hours long, but well worth it.

    https://youtu.be/MJgoDYeP0Jk

    You can see the formation of the response, the confusion resolving into determination, a plan of action being developed and the men being dispatched. You can also see the horror when the bodies start to hit the ceiling from 100 stories up, the South tower gets hit, and how these men just kept working in the face of all this, even setting up a South tower command and running a parallel response from there.

    None of them ran. They did their duty. This was some of the best America had to offer, and they were sacrificed for someone’s religious and political agenda.

    And what honor did they get?

    …well, a scant 7 years later, a Muslim was elected President. So I would say, not much.

    It is the doom of men that they forget.

    Do NOT forget these men on this 18th anniversary of their death. Do NOT forget all those other, Police, Military, etc., who also responded and also died. Do NOT forget those men and women who were just at work for another day at the office and ended up burned and pulverized by cowardly worshipers of a counterfeit god.

    And remind OTHERS.

    We can best honor those who died by reminding everyone we know, everyone we love, about the horrific ideology that caused their sacrifice. Work against those who would cozy to those psychopaths, expose their covering for the evils of Islam at every turn, reveal exactly what the Democrats want to hide.

    The Jewish people in the aftermath of the Holocaust said, “Never Again”.

    Must WE lose six million to say it ourselves?

    God bless America on this patriot day. God bless those who miss the fallen. God bless those who serve still, on the streets of every city and in the fields of evil overseas, whether the uniform is blue or white or camouflage.

    Pray to the Lord that He may help us defeat this evil, from these enemies within, and without.

    God bless,
    SNS

    15
  3. ^^^343 firefighters, NOT 342. Typing a lot on a tiny screen and not correcting as much as I was typing. Not a worthy mistake, I’m ashamed.

    But while we’re here, let me tell you about just one of those, the first firefighter casualty of the day, the Rev. Mychal Judge. I have said much about the role of chaplains in emergency services on this board, and I honor them and thank them for their service. It is important to remember, though, that they take the same risks in many cases, and may pay the same price for it.

    Mychal Judge did just that.

    I’ll let others tell his story at this link, they do far better than I could with my distant perspective and weak abilities. Suffice to say, however, that God’s annointed do not fear to run in where others run out, either, saving souls and sanity as well as lives, and may God bless them a double portion for that as well.

    https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/for-five-men-tragedy-remains-over-photo-of-911s-first-casualty/article592945/

    SNS

    5
  4. SNS, God bless you and your fallen ‘kin’.

    As far as not forgetting: We became so afraid to offend those who attacked us that we lost ourselves. We need to call them what they are, our enemy. That also includes those among us who pander to our enemy. They hate us.

    6
  5. SNS, thanks for that wonderful post. I watch that documentary every year on 9/11. Those men and women deserve to be honored and remembered. I also watch the ones about the Pentagon and Flight 93. I will never forget.

    3

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