9/11: The Fire Commissioner at Ground Zero

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On the morning of September 11th, 2001 terrorists flew planes into both the World Trade Centre towers in New York and the Pentagon in Washington with a further plane crashing in Pennsylvania as the passengers onboard attempted to wrest control of the aircraft from the hijackers. This atrocity utterly changed the world leaving thousands dead and injured and launched the War on Terror.

Many people can remember where they were on that fateful day and for some, it was on the frontline of the attack. Thomas Von Essen was one of those people. A career firefighter in September 2001 he was the commissioner for the New York Fire Department. As commissioner, He played a key role in helping the city's fire chiefs attempt to coordinate their response to the planes hitting the towers. Although thousands sadly perished that day, thousands more were rescued by the selfless heroism of New York's firefighters and emergency services personnel. But, many of those emergency responders paid the ultimate price for their bravery. Tom and Dan speak about his memories of that morning, the pain of losing so many friends and colleagues, the pride he has in the commitment shown by his men and how some have turned the legacy of 9/11 into a cause for good.



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