Hundreds of first responders put their lives on the line in an effort to save those injured in the attacks on September 11, 2001.
Nine years ago Saturday Kelly Lyons was one of those men on the front lines. He was a New York City Police officer at the time. Lyons spent the September 11th weekend in Palm Springs. Lyons said, “You have flashbacks it’s a different reality of being there and having the bottoms of your boots melting from the steal it takes a toll on me.
On September 11, 2001 Lyons was on the Hudson River patroling the waters. He was dispatched to the World Trade Center. As soon as he arrived he witnessed the second tower crumble to the ground. Lyons said, “Our main job was to get people that were injured out, Lower Manhattan was so destroyed ambulances and fire trucks couldn’t get in. Our main job was transporting the injured.”
Lyons says he still suffers from respirtory problems and infections from the debris and smoke. After the attacks he was at Ground Zero for 2 1/2 days straight. After that, he worked 12-hour shifts for 3 1/2 months straight. “I tried as much as i could to rescue people, we tried with the little preparation we had”, Lyons said.
The 9/11 Health and Compesation Act would have given first responders medical monitoring and more specialized treatment. Legislators in Washington voted it down in August. Those who voted against it cite the bill would kill jobs. Lyons blames law makers for giving up on those who didn’t on September 11th saying, “I think Americas forget, the theme of 9/11 is never forget, but I think they have. I think we’ve been let down by them not passing the legislation and taking care of our health related issues.”