9/11 First Responders to be RecognizedAugust 31, 2011
With the 10th anniversary of 9/11 quickly approaching, the Academy plans to recognize all midshipmen, alumni, faculty, staff, Coast Guardsmen and volunteers who responded to the World Trade Center rescue and recovery efforts on that fateful day in 2001. All of those first responders who were honored by the Academy and the Secretary of Transportation for their many hours at the 9/11 site will be recognized on Saturday, September 10th at 1430 on the Tomb Field sidelines during the pre-game ceremonies of the KP-USCGA football game. Anyone who can attend is asked to RSVP to Lisa Donitz at email@example.com at the earliest possible time (no later than Thursday, September 8th) to expedite event planning.
FYI on the role USMMA and its midshipmen played an important part in rescue efforts on 9/11.
Unit Citation for 9-11 Efforts
10/3/2005 – The contributions of U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) personnel in responding to the terrorist attack of September 11, 2001 were formally recognized by Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta during a ceremony in New York City recently.
Secretary Mineta attended an event at the World Financial Center in Manhattan on Sept. 17 to recognize the civilian merchant mariners who assisted in the evacuation and rescue efforts at Ground Zero following the 9-11 attack on the World Trade Center.
During the program, Secretary Mineta made special note of the 180 midshipmen, faculty and staff from the USMMA who took part in the 9-11 relief efforts. The Secretary presented a pennant that signifies the Department of Transportation’s Outstanding Unit Award to CAPT Eric Wallischeck, who represented of the Academy at the event.
Immediately following the 9-11 terrorist attack, members of the Academy community operated a fleet of nine small vessels ferrying rescue personnel and supplies around New York Harbor. This was a particularly significant action since access to the Ground Zero area by road transportation was severely limited.
The Award’s citation reads in part: “USMMA provided significant humanitarian relief, easing the burden on firefighters and other rescue personnel during those desperate and difficult first days…
“Over the course of nine days, USMMA [vessels] moved in excess of 1,500 firefighters, EMTs, police officers and other rescue personnel, and moved several tons of food, water, rescue supplies and materiel from locations in Brooklyn and New Jersey to the landing area [near Ground Zero].
“By their outstanding courage, resourcefulness and commitment of service over self, the members of the United States Merchant Marine Academy…reflected great credit upon themselves and have upheld the highest traditions of the Department of Transportation.”