Archives of the Mayor's Press Office

Date: Tuesday, October 30, 2001
Release #341-01

Contact: Sunny Mindel / Lynn Rasic
Frank Gribbon (FDNY)
(646) 328-7418
(718) 999-2056


Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, Fire Commissioner Thomas Von Essen and unions representing New York City firefighters today announced plans for a memorial service for the 343 members of the FDNY who were lost in the September 11, 2001 attack at the World Trade Center. The service will be held at 9 AM on Sunday, November 18, 2001 at Madison Square Garden. Due to space constraints, the memorial service will not be open to the general public, but will be attended by members of the FDNY, their families, as well as families of the fallen firefighters and emergency personnel.

Joining the Mayor and Commissioner Von Essen were Harold A. Schaitberger, general president of the International Association of Firefighters; Kevin Gallagher, president of the Uniformed Firefighters Association; and Peter Gorman, president of the Uniformed Fire Officers Association. Together they unveiled plans to hold the largest memorial service in Fire Department history.

"On September 11th the New York City Fire Department met the worst of humanity with the best of humanity," Mayor Giuliani said. "This memorial will celebrate the lives and dedication of our firefighters who were lost while saving others. Thousands of firefighters and rescue workers from around the country and around the world will join us in a procession to honor our fallen "Bravest" and show their support for our City and our Fire Department."

"We are united in our grief over this tragedy," Fire Commissioner Thomas Von Essen said. "The City, the Fire Department and the unions have worked together to create this unprecedented memorial service, one that reflects our unity and strength in this time of great need."

"Firefighters from across the United States, Canada, and the world will come to New York for this memorial service," IAFF General President Harold Schaitberger said. "They will join us in honoring all New York City fire officers, firefighters, and paramedics and recognizing the supreme sacrifice of our fallen firefighters and their families."

"It is fitting that we come together as one to pay tribute to all FDNY personnel who gave their lives at the World Trade Center, as well as those firefighters who continue to protect the citizens of the City of New York, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year," UFOA President Kevin Gallagher said.

"This memorial service will give our fire officers and firefighters, as well as the families of those brave men who lost their lives, an opportunity to see the length and breadth of support and compassion for them from across the fire service," UFOA President Peter Gorman said.

Prior to the service, Fire Department personnel and their families will be joined at Madison Square Park in Manhattan by thousands of firefighters from around the country and the world. They will then begin a procession to Madison Square Garden, where the two-hour service will be held to honor the 343 members of the department who were lost on September 11th. Jumbotrons will be set up outside of Madison Square Garden to broadcast the service for the thousands of firefighters who are expected to attend from across the country and around the world.