JERSEY CITY, N.J. — Twenty years after the September 11 attacks killed nearly 3,000 people in the U.S., crowds gathered in New York to remember the lives lost that day at a name-reading ceremony.
On a beautiful New York City morning much like it was 20 years ago, people gathered to keep true to the promise to never forget.
Mike Low, the father of a 28-year-old flight attendant Sara remembered the life of her daughter, who was a flight attendant on American Airlines Flight 11 that day.
Each name of those who died at Ground Zero was read aloud, affecting Americans from every corner of the country from all walks of life.
For retired FDNY Captain Phil Ruvolo, that day 20 years ago was about rushing into action to save lives. Ruvolo was not on duty at the time of the first plane attack.
Ruvolo quickly rushed to help, commandeering a city bus from Brooklyn to Lower Manhattan to quickly arrive at Ground Zero.
“It’s chaotic. The clouds were very dense,” Ruvolo said.
They immediately hit the rubble of a collapsed tower, searching until there was nowhere else to look. Tragically, an effort to rescue people quickly became a recovery mission, finding a few deceased people beneath the rubble.
John Napalitano and Kevin O’Rourke were two of the seven members that Rescue 2, Ruvolo’s unit, lost that day. Ruvolo found joy Saturday in seeing John’s daughters and Kevin’s grandson.
“The friendships are gone, but I look around the room and the young ones have sprung up. It’s a renewing of life,” Ruvolo said.
In recent days, President Biden has authorized the declassification of 9/11 documents that many families have been demanding for years.
The documents are expected to provide a better understanding of Saudi Arabia’s role in the attacks, and who in the country helped finance them.