The unsung tale of 9/11’s maritime rescuers
By James Henry, Transportation Institute | Originally published in the New York Post
Every September, Americans take time on the anniversary of 9/11 to share their memories of that fateful day, recall how they first learned the news and pay tribute to the heroes who answered the unexpected call of duty.
As a nation we remember the first responders who ran into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. We reflect on the sacrifice of the passengers aboard Flight 93 who charged the cockpit in the sky above Pennsylvania. We honor the many who enlisted to serve our country in the wake of the attacks to bring justice to our attackers.
And while we may find ourselves divided on many issues nearly two decades later, we are bound forever by the words “Never forget.”
America’s maritime industry is accustomed to working in quiet anonymity to protect the nation and keep the economy moving. Yet, to those familiar with us, the actions of men like Vincent Ardolino on Sept. 11, 2011, come as no surprise.
In times of war and in times of peace, the American mariner will step up to serve without thinking twice.
And on that awful day, their aid — like that of so many brave first-responders — proved indispensable.
Fact is, this nation is blessed with many heroes willing to rush to help their neighbor, even at risk to themselves and without any desire to be singled out for their heroism.
Our mariners demonstrated that with crystal clarity on 9/11. As a maritime nation, we should count ourselves fortunate.
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