WASHINGTON, D.C. - On Sept. 11, 2001, 62 members of the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) perished when hijacked planes crashed into the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon near Washington, D.C. Window cleaners, elevator operators, porters, tour guides, state employees, first responders, and maintenance workers were our friends, our family, our neighbors, our co-workers, and our union brothers and sisters. To commemorate the 11th anniversary of this national tragedy, SEIU International President Mary Kay Henry issued the following statement:
"Eleven years after one of the greatest tragedies to strike this country in generations, we have not forgotten the stories of unmatched courage and heroism that arose from our darkest hour: The first-responders who walked into burning buildings to save others, the security guards who guided hundreds to safety, the strangers who reached out a friendly hand to those in need.
"On that day, 62 members of SEIU - members of 1199SEIU, SEIU Local 4053/PEF and SEIU 32BJ - died while on the job. They were our friends, our neighbors, our aunts and uncles, mothers and fathers. The paramedic, husband and father, who put himself through night school to answer the call of public service, the immigrant janitor and single mother who worked tirelessly to realize the American Dream, and the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance employee, committed to civic life and social activism.
"Today, as we reflect on the heroism and bravery of those who perished on Sept. 11, 2001, we are reminded of just how many men and women risk their lives each day. And we are called to renew our commitment to honor the legacy of the brave and heroic by respecting the work of those who keep our communities safe and protected."