Families Of 9/11 Victims Listen To Second Batch Of 911 Tapes
For family members of those who died in the World Trade Center collapse, the release of more emergency tapes from that day opened old wounds, but as NY1's Ruschell Boone reports, it also increased their desire to insure the city learns from the past.
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After listening to hundreds of 911 calls from September 11th, Rosemary Cain says she has a better understanding of why her son died. The 35-year-old firefighter was killed in the terror attacks on the World Trade Centers.
"The fire department and the emergency responders didn't have the proper equipment and they couldn't communicate. That was like knife in my heart to listen to that," she said.
Cain was one of several family members who listened to the tapes along with some of the survivors of the terror attacks. And even though many were happy the recordings were released they were very critical of the city and the fire department. Many of the family members were part of a suit against the city to have the tapes released.
"In five years these families have to seek legal help to release this information; that is a disgrace to this great city. It is a disgrace to the greatest fire department in the world," said retired FDNY Captain Al Fuentes.
"At first I was told two to three hundred calls. Now today, we received 1,613 calls. How and why did this happen? We need to know the answer to this question," said Norman Siegel, an attorney for 9/11 families.
The city apologized to for the delay, and it says all the tapes have now been released. Most of the recordings only had the audio of the emergency operators, and an attorney for some of the family members say he's planning to go back to court in the fall to have the names and telephone numbers of the victims released. Sally Regenhard, whose firefighter son died in the trade center collapse, says that's the only way the city can learn from the mistakes that were made on 9/11.
"We only have half of a conversation. We only hear partial conversations, other than the very few Melissa Doi type of conversations. We can learn so much from that," she says. "We have to learn from the deadly mistakes of the past."
These family members say they hope the city will learn from those mistakes and not make them again in the future.
- Ruschell Boone