Tunnel to Towers is an organization in our area focused on raising money for the families of the heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice.

From first responders to our military warriors, Tunnel to Towers is there to help.

Here's a quick explanation about two of their cornerstone programs, "Glod Star Family Home Program" and "Fallen First Responder Home Program" from the website:

The Gold Star Family Home Program, launched in September 2018, honors the legacy of those who made the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country. The Foundation will provide a mortgage-free home to surviving spouses with young children.
Fallen First Responder Home Program, Tunnel to Towers aims to pay off the mortgages of fallen law enforcement officers and firefighters who lose their lives in the line of duty, or to 9/11 related illness, and leave behind young children. The Foundation’s goal is to ensure stability and security for these families facing sudden, tragic loss.

The organization was born out of a specific tragic story from 9/11.

Stephen Siller

Of course, thousands of innocent American lost their lives 21 years ago and every story deserves telling and a place in history.

One story in particular highlights the sacrifices of the heroes who run toward danger to save complete strangers and stand out from the rest.

On Sept. 11, 2001, Firefighter Stephen Siller, with Brooklyn's Squad 1, was at the end of his overnight shift. He was heading home for a quick change and then off to play golf with his brothers when jihadists slammed a hijacked jet into the North Tower of the World Trade Center.

The impact destroyed the stairwell access, trapping hundreds above the 91st floor.

Siller hears the reports over his scanner and calls his wife to tell his brothers he's not golfing today.

Stephen Sillen then, in an extraordinary move, turns around and heads back to the firehouse.

Collecting his gear he proceeded to head to lower Manhattan. Stopped at the Brooklyn Battery Bridge, which was closed in response to the attacks, Stephen got out of his truck, put on 60 pounds of gear, and ran through the tunnel to the towers.

He ran toward the danger and lost his life in service to our community.

WTC Survivors Hold Rally in New York City
Getty Images

If you want to help this outstanding group where 95% of the funds raised go toward the people they intend to help, please visit the website and help.

See 20 Ways America Has Changed Since 9/11

For those of us who lived through 9/11, the day’s events will forever be emblazoned on our consciousnesses, a terrible tragedy we can’t, and won’t, forget. Now, two decades on, Stacker reflects back on the events of 9/11 and many of the ways the world has changed since then. Using information from news reports, government sources, and research centers, this is a list of 20 aspects of American life that were forever altered by the events of that day. From language to air travel to our handling of immigration and foreign policy, read on to see just how much life in the United States was affected by 9/11.

Never Forget: Notable 9/11 memorials in NJ

There are a number of memorials in New Jersey dedicated to remembering the lives of residents lost in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The sites range from gardens to parks and plaques to statues.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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