From The Mayor's Desk

INDEX

JOSEPH SPOR

ATTACK PROCLAMATION

COMING OF DAWN

REFLECTIONS OF THE RIGHT STUFF

UNITED WE STAND

A VETERANS' DAY PRAYER

THANKSGIVING

CELEBRATE!

ACTIONS AND REACTIONS

LEST WE FORGET

ANTHONY, YOU MADE A DIFFERENCE

HOW TO REMEMBER

VETERANS' DAY 2002

THE FUND

FROM NEW YORK, WITH LOVE

HALLOWED GROUND

NEW YORK SAYS, THANKS!

WE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN

 

  Anthony, You Made A Difference!  

 

Last March, we had the unique honor of hosting Lt. Joe Huber from the Fire Department of New York (FDNY).  He came to Anthony in response to your support for his fallen comrade, Joe Spor, and the relationship that has developed as a result.  Elsewhere in this newspaper is an e-mail I received from Lt. Huber.  I’m going to let his e-mail speak for him.  What I want to write about are just a couple of the ways the people of Anthony have really made a difference.

 

First, I (and Joe) was amazed at the generosity of the businesses in Anthony.  When Joe walked into his suite at the Redfern Reunion House, one entire wall was covered with gifts for him and his whole family.  Not one merchant in town turned me down when I told them whom the gifts were for.  It took no less than 7 boxes to UPS them back to New York and his wife and kids were just tickled to death. 

 

Second, everyone treated Joe like royalty.  We tend to be pretty reserved around here, but not with Joe.  He’s a very open, outgoing, friendly person and you responded with extra warmth and openness.  Everywhere we went people would come up to him and thank him for what he and his brothers did and let him know that he was a hero.  An ex-fire chief gave him an AFD belt buckle; an ex-fireman gave him an old AFD helmet; the son of an ex-fireman gave him a sterling silver WTC coin.  He signed his autograph on kids’ clothes, backpacks, and even a couple of teachers’ shirts.  You made him feel welcome and special like I’ve never seen before.

 

The school program was just awesome!  Principal Williams, Miss Carr, all of the teachers, and the kids put together a first-class event to honor Joe and our own firemen.  If you were there, you couldn’t help but be moved and inspired by both their presentations and Joe’s story (it really wasn’t a speech as much as a first-person account of the brotherhood of firemen).  Afterwards, in the evening, Joe and our firemen got together and spent a couple of hours just talking and getting to know each other.  By the time the party broke up, several of our firemen told Joe to expect them to visit him in New York sometime soon.  Guys, he’s expecting you (but call and let him know first).

 

Lastly, I’d like to pass along a phone call I got from one of the Brooklyn firemen who marched in the KC St. Patrick’s Day parade with Joe. I know that Joe felt the same way.  This guy, Bobby Fraumani, said that on the flight home after 3 days of being treated like first-class heroes in KC, he, Joe, and the other firemen, police, and Port Authority guys couldn’t believe the treatment they received.  When I called and invited them to come to Kansas, and they accepted, they assumed they would be bunking in a firehouse.  Instead, they had rooms in the Westin Crown Centre and were royally treated.  But Bobby said, “You know, John, the thing that surprised us most of all was the depth of emotion complete strangers all the way in Kansas would show about September 11.  We never realized just how what happened to us affected the rest of the country.  Now we know we were never alone.”  And Joe Huber, in every conversation he had with the firemen, the school kids, or at Friendship Meals always made a point to tell us how that during the darkest days, when he would spend 24 hours trying to identify body parts and plot their location for identification, and then go home only to wash up for 3 or 4 funerals, we were the only good thing that happened.  Our e-mails, letters, phone calls, and packages helped get him through the bad times. 

 

I continue to stay in almost daily touch with Joe Huber and also Joe Spor’s wife.  They are so very grateful for everything that you have done to brighten some very dark days.  The Victim’s Relief Fund is still active at both banks and 100% of your donations continue to go to Mrs. Spor and her 4 kids. 

 

I’ve never been prouder of the people of Anthony than I was during Joe’s visit.  More importantly than the gifts given, you gave freely of your hearts and yourselves.  And I don’t think we will ever completely realize the difference that our simple acts of giving have made and will continue to make. 

 

Last modified:  September 23, 2010  

Copyright 2002 Anthony 9-11 Memorial Committee

Send mail to AnthonySept11Memorial@gmail.com with

questions or comments about this web site.