The firefighters of New York City were headed up the smoky stairwells when everyone else was headed down. Of the more than 2,800 people who died on Sept. 11, 2001 in the terrorist attacks at three U.S. locations, 343 of them were firefighters — a gut-wrenching fact for employees at an company called .
With CEO Lori Fouché presiding, Fireman's Fund employees were joined by members of the public and firefighters from six local fire agencies during a 9/11 remembrance ceremony Tuesday morning at the company's San Marin Drive campus in Novato.
Fouché said 109 Fireman's Fund employees were on two floors of the World Trade Center that morning, and all survived the attacks. She worked in Manhattan and grew up in New Jersey.
"I lost high school classmates, friends and colleagues in the attack ... thankfully I know many who survived," she said. "I think we all still remember where we were on 9/11 and the immense emotions we felt at the time."
Battalion Chief Bill Tyler of the shared some words and the color guard from Novato Fire presented the flags. Adrian Quince, a Fireman's Fund employee, played "Taps" on his trumpet, and a recording of comments from Chief Ernie Mitchell of the U.S. Fire Administration was played.
Have you thanked a firefighter for his or her service lately?