FBI Agents Association: We remember Agents and other First Responders Who Were Exposed to Toxins and Hazardous Materials at 9/11 Sites

By Allan Lengel

Brian O’Hare, president of the FBI Agents Association, issued a statement on Wednesday to commemorate the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on America. He particularly made note of the agents and first responders who were exposed to hazardous materials at 9/11 sites, and subsequently contracted diseases including cancer. Some have died.

The association has fought hard for years to make certain families of agents who died from 9/11 related diseases, get benefits. It hasn’t been an easy battle.

The following is O’Hare’s statement:

The FBI Agents Association marks with solemn reflection the 18th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks by remembering all the victims and their families.

FBIAA honors the memory today of FBI Special Agent Leonard “Lenny” Hatton and retired FBI Special Agent John P. O’Neill, who on this day 18 years ago lost their lives at the World Trade Center.  Agent Hatton saw smoke and fire coming from the North Tower of the World Trade Center and rushed to the scene.  He reported critical information to the FBI and assisted emergency responders in leading people from the World Trade Center buildings to safety and lost his life when the Tower collapsed.  Mr. O’Neill, who retired from the FBI in August 2001 to become Chief of Security for the World Trade Center, had escaped from the North Tower but returned to help others.

We also remember FBI Special Agents and other first responders who were exposed to toxins and hazardous materials at 9/11 sites in the performance of their duty.  Sadly, these Agents and other first responders continue to fall ill from cancer from this exposure.  Approximately 10,000 emergency responders, recovery and cleanup workers at the 9/11 sites have been diagnosed with various forms of cancer according to the World Trade Center Health Program.

FBI Special Agents have died from 9/11-related illnesses and other agents and employees are suffering from illness resulting from their work at these sites.  FBIAA honors the memory of the sixteen fallen Agents:  Dennis Bonelli, Steven A. Carr, William R. Craig, Brian L. Crews, Laurie Fournier, Jerry D. Jobe, Laurie Johnson, Mark C. Johnston, David J. LeValley, Mark J. Mikulski, Melissa S. Morrow, Robert M. Roth, Gerard D. Senatore, Rex A. Stockham, Paul H. Wilson and Wesley J. Yoo.

FBIAA is ensuring that fallen Agents, Agents confronting 9/11 illnesses and their families are provided the support they need and deserve.  This support includes assistance and benefits from the U.S. Department of Labor, the Victims Compensation Fund (VCF) and other sources.  Fallen Agents from 9/11-related illnesses are now recognized on the FBI Wall of Honor for having given their lives while in performance of their duties, and FBIAA’s Memorial College Fund pays a majority of the college costs for the children of members who pass away while they are active duty Agents.

On this solemn day, we remember with gratitude the victims and their families, Agents and other first responders and their families, and all of the 9/11 heroes who served our fellow citizens with courage and compassion.

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