Monday, September 18, 2006

Honor a hero

Kyrie Eleison has tagged me:

Here are the rules:
1. Honor a living hero
2. Preference given to Firefighters, Police Officers, Paramedics, EMT's, Dispatchers
3. Not everyone is acquainted with someone fitting into these categories. If this is the case, then honor someone else, a hero in your life who is willing to "give all" in some way. It can be a priest, a pastor, a teacher, a relative, a friend...etc.

I chose this one because this story most recently touched me.

John McLoughlin (World Trade Center attack survivor)
John McLoughlin (born ca. 1953) was one of two Port Authority Police survivors of the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center, and is the subject of an Oliver Stone film released in 2006.

The film World Trade Center retells the story of McLoughlin (played by Nicolas Cage) and William Jimeno. The two Port Authority police officers were rescued after being trapped in the rubble at Ground Zero. Jimeno was pulled out after 12 hours; McLoughlin came out after 22 hours.

McLoughlin led a team of four officers, including Jimeno, between the two towers on the main concourse when the first tower collapsed. The five ran toward a freight elevator, and were buried in the ensuing collapse of the concourse. Officers Antonio Rodrigues and Chris Amoroso were killed immediately. McLoughlin, Jimeno and a third officer, Dominick Pezzulo, were trapped but alive. The freight elevator withstood the devastation, creating breathing room that saved their lives. Pezzulo managed to free himself, but the collapse of the second tower caused shifting and additional debris falling through, and he was mortally wounded.

McLoughlin and Jimeno eventually were rescued when former marines Jason Thomas and Dave Karnes heard their cries for help.

"As we were walking we were yelling at the top of our lungs ‘United States Marines, can anyone hear us?'" Karnes described. "As we approached the depression of the south tower I thought I heard something. Indeed it was some muffled call for help, I ensured them that Thomas and I were both looking for them so keep yelling so we can find you."

The two men were eventually rescued after hours of painstaking effort.
McLoughlin was gravely injured. Doctors kept him in a medically induced coma for six weeks. He underwent 27 surgeries and took months to recover. Jimeno spent nearly three months in the hospital and rehabilitation.

Four months after their rescue, McLoughlin and Jimeno - who both have since retired - took part in a ceremony at Ground Zero to watch as the final column was removed. When all the uniformed officers walked out of The Pit, the last two to be rescued were the last to leave. On June 11, 2002, McLoughlin (with a walker) and Jimeno (with a limp) walked across a stage at Madison Square Garden to receive the Port Authority's Medal of Honor.

Source: Wikipedia Article

I tag:
Deanna at JIP's Journal
Julie at sotto sotto

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