Saturday, April 2, 2011

A Promise Made

10 years ago you and I made a promise to never forget. Every firefighter reading this knows what I'm talking about. Never forgetting also means taking care of the families of our fallen, it also means being respectful, being dutiful and being protective of their memory and the legacy that they have passed on to us. Today we have an opportunity to honor that pledge, today the families of our fallen along with the families of those citizens that they strove to protect are involved in an extremely emotional and extremely personal struggle.

The work is well underway at the 9/11 Memorial at the Ground Zero site, it is fitting and proper that the nation does what it is doing. Although there is much happening there that we disagree with, it is hard to battle with the forces of political correctness and their ideologies. I have asked that we join together and petition the people working on this site to include the ranks of our fallen, the ages of those taken, remove all mention of the evil men who perpetuated this tragedy and to strive to give fitting and proper homage to our fallen and to this nation that was so gravely wounded.

So far all of our petitions have fallen on deaf ears, and perhaps it is my own prejudice and biases that motivate me to want to have our fallen recognized in a greater way. I make no apologies for these feelings. I pray to God that we have the strength to go forward and continue to support the families of our fallen, to continue to fight to have a memorial constructed perhaps in Washington DC to those responders of 9/11. But all of this pales in comparison to the struggle that the families are now finding themselves in. Please read this article which I have attached to this blog from the New York Times it speaks about the human remains which are still unidentified from 9/11.

Decency and common sense cry out for separate and dignified memorial site to these unidentified fallen, it is only fitting and proper that their families be allowed and the descendents of their families be allowed to visit those who were so shamefully taken from us on that tragic and mournful day. We will continue to fight for separate memorial to responders of 9/11 that is our duty, that is our promise that is our goal. First however we must stand with those families who lost sons and daughters husbands and wives, brothers and sisters, cousins and in laws. We must demand that should not this great nation provide a tomb for those remains?

Why hide these beautiful people seven stories below ground in a museum of all things when we have the capability, we have the opportunity, we have the responsibility to do better. I know not what specific direction we should take but I do know that I will stand with the families and I ask you to stand with them as well. It is time that the American fire service for once stand together undivided for that which we were born to do, for that are driven by our faith to do, for that which we cannot shirk to anyone else. We must care for those families.

I have asked our executive technical editor Glenn Corbett to keep us informed as to what is going on with the 9/11 Memorial and the human remains. Glenn will find us a direction, more than anyone else in the world I trust Glenn's leadership and Glenn's wisdom in this regard. I know Glenn will be working with Sally Regenhard and the other 9/11 families to help us find a solution to this incredibly moral dilemma. Now is the time for unity now is the time for strength now is a time for faith now is the time to do the right thing.Times story

Your brother Bobby


  1. Bobby, I don't know what the proper answer is, but I do know that they are going about it at the present time in a way that is wrong. It IS hallowed ground, and to put the remains of the fallen on display is, in our culture, disrespectful. It seems that the one group who has no say in what is being done is the most important group of all, the families who have lost their loved ones on that awful day.

    We are, by and large, a people of short memories. Perhaps this is good in some ways, but we must continue on as a conscience for the nation to provide a memorial that is just and fitting not only for those innocents who lost their lives that day, but for those responders who gave their lives for them in the line of duty.

    Walter Corrigan, Chaplain/Firefighter

  2. Bobby-I think you have an army of 1 million firefighters behind what you're saying here. I love the idea of a national memorial in DC. Like anything else we do that has value and is right in our heart of hearts, it takes a grass roots effort. You can count on us. The families can count on us. It's th least we can do.
    Your brother, Ron Kanterman