As our nation today marks the 17th anniversary of the tragic 9/11 attacks on our country, we honor the memory of SEIU members and others who lost their lives on that September morning 17 years ago.
On Tuesday, September 11, 2001, 62 SEIU members were killed when hijacked planes crashed into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in rural Pennsylvania.
On the anniversary of this tragedy, we remember their heroism not only on that day but in their daily lives. Please read the short yet powerful biographies of these 62 people — as seen through the eyes of their friends, relatives, and co-workers.
Let’s take a moment to remember them in all their humanity. They ranged in age from a mere 23 to a 74-year-old retiree who went back to work because he loved what he did. They carried out their daily work with great pride and gave tirelessly to their families and communities. Several of them were shining examples of heroism.
- We remember the many members of SEIU 32BJ, ranging from security guards and janitors to elevator operators and window cleaners. We honor the memory of the security guard, Roko Comaj, who was a hero for his quick response in the first attack on the twin towers back in 1993.
- We remember many members of the Public Employees Federation of New York, who worked in the State Department of Tax and Finance, including those who brought white collar criminals to justice. We honor the memory of the tax staffer, Rose Riso, who took her volunteer role as a fire warden so seriously that it’s estimated she saved from about 40 to nearly 200 lives on 9/11.
- We remember the members of 1199NE who served on fire departments and paramedic squads. We honor the memory of the paramedic, David Marc Sullins, who made three trips to the hospital before a tower collapsed on him.
- And we remember the Massachusetts 509 member, Christopher Carstanjen, who was on a flight out of Boston, heading on a well-deserved vacation that instead abruptly ended in disaster.
Many of the SEIU members we lost had come to the United States in pursuit of the American Dream from all over the world: Albania, China, Columbia, the Dominican Republic, Ghana, Italy, Nigeria and Syria.
Francisco Cruz Sr.
James Joseph Domanico
Clyde Frazier Jr.
Jorge Luis Morron Garcia
Yan Z. (Cindy) Guan
Chow Kwam Lam
Hyun-joon (Paul) Lee
Diane Moore Parsons
Dennis J. Pierce
David Marc Sullins
Yuk-Pink “Winnie” Wong