By David Caplan
On May 17, 2015, the first ever Tunnel to Tower Climb was held in the new One World Trade Center. Firefighters, military members, friends and family of first responders and others climbed nearly 2,000 steps to honor the lives lost in the 9/11 attacks.
It was all part of the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Tower Foundation, which is an organization that raises money for first responders and military, to help improve their lives after suffering catastrophic injuries and losses while serving and defending our country.
On September 11, 2001 Stephen Siller was on his way to a round of golf when he heard of the first plane hitting the North Tower. He decided to drive into the city to help, but when he got to the Battery Tunnel it was already closed. Not letting this stop him, he donned his 60 lbs. of gear, ran through the tunnel and up into the tower where he lost his life while saving others. The climb was also dedicated to a Captain Billy Burke who died on 9/11 after ordering his entire unit to evacuate while trying to rescue a quadriplegic confined to a wheelchair.
Over $500,000 was raised on an absolutely beautiful day in lower Manhattan. The event was a combination of inspiration and hope and demonstrated just how amazing New York City can be when we work together for a common cause. The participants went wild when Bryan Dilberian a triple amputee and Afghanistan veteran stepped up to the starting line. He completed the 90 floors on prosthetics.
New York Water Taxi also fielded a team for the climb that included yours truly “Dave on a Boat,” Morgan, Rachel, Kirk and Heidi. We all finished and were thrilled to participate and contribute to such an important and historic event.
Last Blog’s Trivia Answer: The Cloisters is in Fort Tryon Park in the Washington Heights section of upper Manhattan.
Last Blog’s Mystery Photo: Whale Room at The Museum of Natural History.
This Week’s Trivia Question: What is the oldest museum in NYC?