This September will be the 17th anniversary of the tragedy of 9/11. In remembrance, you can take part in the annaul Phoenix 5K that benefits the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation.
Tunnel to Towers is dedicated to the memory of FDNY hero Stephen Siller, who lost his life on 9/11. Siller was off-duty when the first plane hit, but drove to his Brooklyn firehouse and sought the quickest route to the World Trade Center. With the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel blocked, Siller ran three miles with his gear to the Twin Towers, where he perished.
Siller’s six older siblings later started the Tunnel to Towers Foundation in celebration of Siller’s heroic acts. The foundation has since held an annual 5K in New York where participants can run the same path as Siller. The event draws around 25,000 participants from all over the world, and for a third year, Arizona will be able to join in.
Local Arizonians, John and Stella Herold, also suffered a loss in the terrible events of 9/11. The Herolds, inspired by the Stephen Siller 5K, are now hosting a Tunnel to Towers event in Phoenix, in honor of John’s brother, who perished in the South Tower of the WTC.
The 5K will be held on Sunday, September 9, at the Tempe 9/11 Healing Field. All funds raised at the 5K will help fund the “Smart Home Program,” which builds specially-designed smart homes for our nation’s most catastrophically injured veterans. “They enlisted and now it’s our turn to do our part,” John Herold writes.
In addition to the 5K Run/Walk, the organizers of the Phoenix event are pleased to announce that American Idol’s Jax will be performing at the event. Jax’s Dad, John Miskanic is a retired FDNY firefighter and was a responder in the 9/11 attacks. He attained a lung ailment after he was injured on the job at the “rescue, turned recovery” site of 9/11.
This year’s 5K will be dedicated to fallen Tempe Fire Captain Kyle Brayer who we lost this year. His father will accept the first ever “Follow the Footsteps” award.
Come celebrate the heroism of our nation’s first responders in remembrance of their actions and in “following their footsteps.” As John Herold writes, “Since 9/11/01, our family has a saying, ‘To grieve is a tribute. To remember is a blessing. To overcome and help others is a victory in the eyes of those we have lost.'”
For more information on the Tunnel to Towers 5K Run/Walk, please visit http://www.T2Trun.org.