It amazes me that 6 years later we haven't heard all the stories to be told of the heros of that fateful day. I was watching Oprah at the gym today (she's not my first choice) and I hear about this man:
"Tales of true heroism have come to light in the years since September 11, 2001. New York City firefighter Stephen Siller is one man who didn't run from danger…he ran toward it.
At 8:30 a.m. that morning, Stephen headed home after working the night shift at his Brooklyn firehouse. He had planned to spend the day golfing with his brothers, but when he heard about the first plane hitting the World Trade Center, he turned his truck around.
On his way back to New York City, Stephen got stuck at the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, which was already sealed off to traffic, according to his family. Instead of turning back, he strapped 75 pounds of gear onto his back, abandoned his truck and ran through the tunnel…straight for the burning buildings.
"What must have been going through his mind running through that tunnel with gear on his back…he has a wife and five children. You have to be torn running through," says Frank, Stephen's brother. "He knew that he was a firefighter. His job is to save people."
Stephen ran through the tunnel and straight for the World Trade Center, where he lost his life when the towers collapsed. More than 340 firefighters and paramedics also lost their lives that day."
He among many others is a true hero, each to be honored in their own way. Stephen's family decided to do something important to honor their fallen hero, this is what they did:
"To honor Stephen, his loved ones host an annual charity event, the Tunnel to Towers Run. This 3.1 mile run retraces Stephen's footsteps on that fateful day. Some participants even wear firefighter gear while they run…just like Stephen did.
As the runners make their way through the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel, they pass photos of fallen firefighters who, along with Stephen, courageously ran into the towers hoping to save lives."
I dare say that our country needs something like this to happen to keep us grounded because unfortunate as it is, we get caught up in living our lives and forget what really is important until something like this comes along. Something to remind us just how important our families, our lives, our freedom and our "everyday heros" are.
This day every year brings back feeling, thoughts and emotions that I hope to never forget, not because I want to focus on the tragedy of the day, but because it reminds me, if only for a day what's really important in my life.