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Thread: A Fallen Hero - Video Inside

  1. #591
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    September 11th Charity Ball to Benefit Sick 9/11 Heroes

    http://californianewswire.com/2009/0...181_154139.php

    by National News Desk
    published Wed, 05 Aug 2009

    NEW YORK, N.Y. (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) -- The FealGood Foundation, a non-profit organization that advocates for sick and dying 9/11 Ground Zero First Responders, will hold the FealGood Charity Ball on Friday, September 11, 2009 at New Jersey's Trump National Golf Club Colts Neck.

    "Eight years ago following the World Trade Center bombing, the watchword across the nation was 'We Will Never Forget.' Yet, for most Americans, the memory fades a little more with each passing day," says John Feal, president of the foundation.

    "But the thousands of brave first responders who spent weeks sifting through the burning rubble of the collapsed buildings can never forget. The terrorist attacks have become a nightmare that is literally killing them. Seventy percent of those who served at the site are sick or have died as a result of their 9/11-related illnesses."

    "It's an American tragedy that has gripped my heart," says Peter Grandich who along with the Spano Family Foundation is organizing the event. "Over 30,000 medical, police, fire fighters and volunteers who responded to Ground Zero are sick and our government has turned their back on these heroes."

    In addition to raising funds and awareness, the night will also honor two elected officials and Grandich, all of whom have been staunch supporters of the FealGood Foundation. The honorees are Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney, U.S. Representative for New York's 14th District; Assemblyman David P. Rible, State Assemblyman serving New Jersey's 11th District; and Peter Grandich, founder of Trinity Financial, Sports & Entertainment Management Co.

    The event, which has a star-studded celebrity guest list including many professional athletes, will feature numerous celebrity auction items like a day in the pits with actor/race car driver Patrick Dempsey, lunch and private tickets to a Yankee game with pitcher Brian Bruney, a foursome with NY Jet Jay Feeley and more.

    A complete list of celebrities and auctions is available online at www.FealGoodCharityBall.com . The event will also include a golf outing at the exclusive, members-only Trump National Golf Club Colts Neck.

    For ticket or sponsorship information to the invitation-only event, please visit www.FealGoodCharityBall.com, or call contact Chairwoman Deborah Weiss at 908-670-9896 or email Deborahwss@optonline.net.

    For golfer information contact James Spano at 732-947-8170.

    All referenced product names, and other marks, are trademarks of their respective owners.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  2. #592
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    Ground Zero first responder John McNamara, also aided Hurricane Katrina victims, dies of cancer

    http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/...of_cancer.html

    BY Jonathan Lemire
    DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITER
    8/10/2009

    An FDNY veteran who worked tirelessly at Ground Zero and pushed for better health benefits for first responders died Sunday after a battle with cancer.

    John McNamara, 44, spent 10 years with the FDNY and was diagnosed with colon cancer in the aftermath of his time at Ground Zero.

    McNamara spent about 500 hours looking for his fallen brethren at the site where the World Trade Center once stood, and his plight was part of a documentary called "Save the Brave," which chronicled the lives of ailing rescue workers.

    McNamara, who was assigned to Ladder 123 in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, also joined the FDNY's rescue mission to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

    He became ill in June 2006 and the cancer spread to his liver and stomach.

    Though gravely ill, he spent his remaining years fighting for better testing and health benefits for firefighters who worked at Ground Zero.

    "We take comfort in knowing this hero no longer suffers," said John Feal, head of an advocacy group for Sept. 11th responders.

    McNamara is survived by his wife, Jennifer, and 2-year-old son, Jack.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  3. #593
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    You have to help us, President Obama, say 9/11 survivors

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/2009...survivors.html

    BY Michael Mcauliff
    DAILY NEWS WASHINGTON BUREAU
    9/3/2009

    WASHINGTON - Widows and survivors of 9/11 are demanding President Obama stand with sick responders - and champion a stalled congressional measure to help them.

    Named after NYPD Detective James Zadroga, who died from inhaling toxins, the bill would pay for the treatment of Ground Zero responders and workers sickened by their post-Sept. 11 service.

    But it's been stuck in Congress over fears about its cost.

    After eight years, the people who responded to the worst terror attacks on American soil are getting tired of waiting while more of them die, and have written Obama demanding he act.

    "Their deaths have left a void in our families and have left us wondering why our country, and you, Mr. President, have not done more to help the heroes of 9/11," the letter says.

    The President, it notes, backed the legislation as a senator running for the White House.

    "Since that time, we have heard nothing from you on this issue, and we are deeply disappointed," the letter adds.

    The White House made no promises on Wednesday, but pointed out Obama signed into law a national day of service to honor 9/11.

    "The President deeply supports our 9/11 heroes and their families and he met with several families earlier this year to offer his condolences and ensure they had an open line of communication to the White House," a spokeswoman said.

    Construction worker John Feal, a signer of the letter who lost half of his left foot at Ground Zero, said he hasn't heard back, but he's more concerned about the legislation moving.

    "I voted for the guy," said Feal. "I don't want it to be lip service. I want him to have the same passion for human life that he had for Cash for Clunkers and bailouts for banks."

    Sponsors of the bill in the House had hoped to have it passed in time for next week's grim anniversary.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  4. #594
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    Obama's 9/11 gift: Does the right thing and restores WTC health czar

    http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/...1_problem.html

    Friday, September 4th 2009, 4:00 AM

    President Obama yesterday performed a valuable service for the thousands of sickened 9/11 rescue and recovery workers. He reappointed the indomitable Dr. John Howard as World Trade Center health coordinator.

    Howard was head of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health when President George Bush tapped him to lead government efforts to track what were then unexplained illnesses afflicting those who'd been exposed to toxic dust downtown.

    Howard did his job, thoroughly and aggressively. After months of investigation, he became the first federal official to acknowledge that the debilitating ailments were both real and directly attributable to 9/11 service.

    For his trouble, Howard was roundly punished in the administration. His budget was slashed, his authority was undercut and finally he was ignominiously fired from NIOSH over the Fourth of July weekend last year.

    All because he had the courage to speak the truth.

    Now, Obama has reinstated Howard at NIOSH - and at the forefront of treating and monitoring World Trade Center rescue and recovery workers all over the country.

    This was a terrific step by a President who is being prodded by 9/11 widows and survivors to lead America toward meeting its full obligations to the sick through health care funding and a victims compensation fund.

    There's much more to do, but Obama has given the ill a champion in John Howard.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  5. #595
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    WTC Responder Fatality Investigations

    http://www.myfoxny.com/dpp/news/loca...Investigations

    Published : Sunday, 06 Sep 2009, 7:51 PM EDT

    MYFOXNY.COM - The New York State Department of Health is the data collection center for information on deaths among WTC responders, recovery workers and volunteers, regardless of how or why the death occurred. This data collection system will be used to identify and track all fatalities that occur among WTC responders so that science-based investigations of root causes can begin to be explored.

    Through June 2009, 758 people who worked at the WTC site and have subsequently died have been identified. For each death identified, death certificates, medical records, autopsy results, employment information and WTC exposure information is collected. Confirmed causes of death are identified from death certificates, autopsies and/or medical records. To date, the program has confirmed 614 causes of death; confirmation of status as a WTC responder or volunteer may be pending for some of these people.

    Researchers are beginning to compare mortality rates for the responders to local and national rates. These comparisons will assist in determining whether WTC responders may be at increased risk for specific causes of death. Any conclusions about mortality rates are premature until these analyses are completed.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  6. #596
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    Time to rescue our 9/11 heroes ill from Ground Zero cleanup

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/colu...lez/index.html

    Juan Gonzalez - News
    Wednesday, September 9th 2009, 4:00 AM

    "I knew right away they'd need ironworkers to cut through those collapsed beams," he recalled.

    Picurro joined thousands of hardhats who showed up at Ground Zero that first night. They helped retrieve bodies, battle flames and clear debris.

    Along with the cops, firefighters and other emergency responders, they were lauded as heroes then. Their selfless actions gave us solace and hope amid all that grief.

    They did not know then about the toxic soup of chemicals in the dust and in the air. Federal and city health officials downplayed any danger at the time. They even dared tell the public the air was safe to breathe.

    Now, Joe Picurro, 42, is dying. His family is destitute and his faith in our country's leaders has been shattered.

    The list of ailments ravaging his body is stunning.

    To begin with, his lungs are inflamed and scarred from a disease called sarcoidosis, so inflamed from all the tiny particles of glass and even human bone fragments lodged in them that every breath produces excruciating pain. His doctor has told him he has the lungs of a 95-year-old.

    All the joints in Picurro's body are in constant pain. He suffers from reactive airways dysfunction syndrome (RADS) and acid reflux, which produce periodic bouts of vomiting and coughing that become so violent his throat begins to bleed.

    "Most mornings, when he wakes up, his pillow is soaked with blood," his wife, Laura, said.

    Then, there are the seizures and blackouts. They started several weeks ago and are getting more frequent.

    "I can't leave him alone in the house," Laura Picurro said. "The doctors say there's not much they can do for him now."

    Her husband is taking 37 different medicines that cost nearly $10,000 a month.

    This week, Hospice of New Jersey approved Picurro for treatment. The group will provide a regular nurse to help his wife for a few hours each day.

    He gets workers' compensation for his injuries from the WTC Volunteer Fund. That covers his medical bills and gives him $500 a month for living expenses.

    Like many of the thousands of sick Ground Zero workers, Picurro has had to battle for even that little compensation.

    That's because he didn't realize his sickness was most likely related to his time on The Pile until 2004. So, he` missed the first deadline for filing such claims with the 9/11 federal Victim Compensation Fund.

    He's been unable to work the last five years, and his wife must stay home to care for him. Picurro is battling to keep his home and provide for their 14-year-old daughter, Allison.

    "She just started high school," he said. "My biggest hope is to live long enough to see her graduate."

    It is probably too late to do much for him, Picurro acknowledged.

    Our city and nation owe an enormous debt to his wife, Laura, and their daughter - and to all the other families of Ground Zero workers who are sick today or have already died.

    They are victims of that horrible attack, much the same as the 3,000 who died that first day.

    Yesterday, a handful of local politicians and labor leaders reminded us of that debt. Rep. Carolyn Maloney has been spearheading this fight for years. In February, Maloney and fellow Rep. Jerrold Nadler sponsored the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.

    It would provide permanent health treatment for all 9/11 Ground Zero workers and residents who become sick from their exposure to contaminants. It would also reopen the compensation fund for those who get sick or die.

    The bill has made it through one House committee and is set for a vote in another subcommittee this month. The full House and Senate must still act.

    "It's the least we can do as a grateful nation to those heroes," Maloney said. "I don't want to be back at Ground Zero next year without having this compensation fund passed."
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  7. #597
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    One year after Sept. 11 responders' plea for help, White House responds with thank you card



    http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/...th_thank_.html

    BY MICHAEL MCAULIFF
    DAILY NEWS WASHINGTON BUREAU
    Friday, September 11th 2009, 3:15 PM

    WASHINGTON - A group of Sept. 11 responders finally got an answer from the White House to their plea for help: a thank you card.

    A year ago, members of the Fealgood Foundation delivered that plea to the future President and other lawmakers in a DVD telling the tale of four ailing heroes.

    One of the four, Greg Quibell, had just died of 9/11-linked leukemia. Another, former FDNY firefighter John McNamara, died of cancer last month.

    They wanted to show Congress why it must pass the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, an $8.4 billion bill to help ailing Sept. 11 workers.

    But the act has languished. What the responders have gotten are thank you's, not just from the White House, but from members of Congress who also got copies of "Save the Brave."

    "One congressman's office sent it back with a letter that said we're sorry, we don't accept gifts," said John Feal, who lost half his foot at Ground Zero.

    Feal got the note from the White House saying "Thank you for your kind gift" last week.

    Quibell's widow, Theresa, said the off-tone response was "disturbing," but would forgive it if the President delivers. "My God, at least take care of these guys now," she said.

    Adminstration officials say Obama remains committed to those who answered the call on Sept. 11, and the days after. He reaffirmed his pledge Friday in the Daily News.

    Congressional leaders insist they're committed as well, and the House could finish its bill this month - and vote by November.

    Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-Manhattan) blamed the glacial pace on the GOP. "The previous administration denied there was even a problem," she said.

    Rep. Pete King (R-Nassau) called it a bipartisan disgrace. "This is a clear breach of faith by the government," he said. "This is the same as leaving people on the battlefield."

    Even if the House passes a bill, the Senate has barely started.

    "We have an undeniable moral obligation," said Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, who is sponsoring the Senate bill. "I am optimistic that with President Obama in the White House and a Democratic Congress we can ... act."

    After eight years, 9/11's heroes are left with little more than thank-you notes - and pain.

    "The only gift I've received was the gift of cancer," said former FDNY firefighter Kenny Specht, who battled the disease in his thyroid. "I don't need a letter thanking me for my gift."

    New Yorkers want something more tangible.

    "My son is dying," said Stephen Grossman after visiting his son, Robert, 41, in the hospital where the ex-cop is losing a battle to cancer. "Whatever passes through Congress will be too late for him. I hope it's not too late for other people."
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  8. #598
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    9/11 workers to get the benefits

    http://www.empirestatenews.net/News/20090918-7.html

    9/17/2009

    ALBANY - Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/WF-Yonkers) and Assemblyman Mike Spano (D/C/WF-Yonkers) announced that Governor Paterson signed “Jimmy Nolan’s Law”, extending the time that 9/11 workers can file compensation claims for injuries suffered from participating in the World Trade Center rescue, recovery or cleanup operations.

    “This legislation was crucial for hundreds of men and women who sacrificed their time and health at Ground Zero to help others during the aftermath of our nation’s most horrific attacks in recent history”, said Stewart-Cousins. “His signing now during this 9/11 commemorative period reaffirms his and all New Yorkers’ gratitude for the selfless acts of countless individuals during and after the tragic events of 9/11.”

    “I would like to thank the governor for signing ‘Jimmy Nolan’s Law’ to ensure that New York takes care of the thousands of brave individuals who worked at Ground Zero,” Spano said. “Eight years after the World Trade Center attacks, the heroes who risked their lives to help our nation through its darkest hour will finally get the compensation they deserve.”

    Jimmy Nolan’s Law” allows an additional one-year period for eligible workers to file claims to receive workers’ compensation. Under current law a worker has only 90 days to file a claim, but numerous “second wave” 9/11 victims – those who were affected by the hazardous dust and debris in the aftermath of the attacks– showed symptoms long after the 90-day time restriction.

    The law is named after second wave 9/11 victim Jimmy Nolan, a carpenter from Yonkers and father of three. He was working in construction at NYU when he heard about the World Trade Center attacks and immediately rushed to Ground Zero to provide any assistance he could. He slept at the World Trade Center site for three weeks, and now suffers from wood and skin allergies as well as respiratory problems. He spends $200 a month on medications for these conditions.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  9. #599
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    Thousands seek help for 9/11-related health issues

    http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/...rckcwD9AU1N4O0

    (AP) – 15 hours ago

    NEW YORK — A city task force on medical problems linked to the collapse of the World Trade Center says tens of thousands of New Yorkers have sought treatment or enrolled in a health monitoring program.

    The annual report by the World Trade Center Medical Working Group was released Thursday. The report says nearly 16,000 people have sought out care at publicly funded programs for people with illnesses potentially related to the attacks.

    Another 42,000 rescue, recovery and clean up workers were in monitoring programs.

    But the report also found that there are people who aren't taking advantage of available medical services, including thousands of people suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


  10. #600
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    Thousands of 9/11 workers can now sue over illnesses

    http://www.newsday.com/long-island/t...sses-1.1486633

    9/30/2009

    Thousands of sickened 9/11 recovery workers whose legal claims have been barred because of missed deadlines can now join a massive group suing New York City under a law signed by Gov. David A. Paterson, officials said.

    The law immediately allows more than 3,000 Ground Zero workers to revive lawsuits that were thrown out by a federal judge in July on the technical ground that they were not filed within 90 days of the workers' conditions being diagnosed.

    It will also allow new lawsuits from an untold number of workers who never even filed claims.

    One of them is Chris Klein, 38, a carpenter from Broad Channel, Queens, who worked for three months at Ground Zero in 2002 and is now on disability with a lung condition. Attorneys told him he waited too long after his diagnosis in 2004 and couldn't file a lawsuit.

    "I put my life on the line to help the city and the state, and we were lied to that the air was good to breathe," said Klein, who said he also has been diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and chronic sinusitis.

    Klein said he will now join a separate group of about 10,000 police, firefighters, construction workers and others who worked at or near Ground Zero in the months after 9/11 and who filed lawsuits seeking compensation for subsequent illnesses. They contend the government had told them, falsely, the air conditions were safe.

    One of those laws requires most plaintiffs who are suing municipalities to file a "notice of claim" within 90 days, stating an intention to sue. Ground Zero workers have one year, starting on Sept. 16 when the governor signed the bill into law. It passed the State Senate and Assembly unanimously.

    The law change was first reported by the New York Law Journal last week.

    Marvin Bethea, president of North Bellmore-based 9/11 worker advocacy group, Unsung Heroes Helping Heroes, praised the law change but said he was more focused on reopening the federal Victim Compensation Fund that doled out billions until 2005. Workers would get money more quickly through the fund, he said.

    New York City officials had urged Paterson to veto the bill, in part because they said it would hurt city efforts to reopen the federal fund. Officials also said the change was unnecessary because workers who are just now becoming sick can still file claims within 90 days of their diagnosis.

    Kate O'Brien Ahlers, a spokeswoman for the city's legal team, the Corporation Counsel, estimated Tuesday that the new law would cost the city about $300 million.

    Paterson spokesman Morgan Hook said the city's liability has been capped at $350 million. New claims, he said, would not make taxpayers responsible for more restitution.

    State Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers), who sponsored the bill, said most Ground Zero workers were not thinking about litigation when they got sick and should not be left out of a settlement on a technicality.

    "I'm not trying to rewrite the rules, I'm just trying to right a wrong," she said.

    For Klein, the law change is a small bit of good news as he struggles with his illnesses. Once a big, strapping carpenter, Klein said he now spends most days lying around his mother's house.

    "I'm glad they changed the law," he said. "Hopefully, we're able to get what we deserve."
    No One Knows Everything. Only Together May We Find The Truth JG


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