By Christopher Roberson
For the third year, Lynnfield residents gathered on the Town Common to remember the 2,977 individuals who perished in the heinous attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
During this year’s First Responders Ceremony, Richard Dalton, chairman of the Board of Selectmen, called attention to the names of two gentlemen from Lynnfield who were lost on that fateful Tuesday. Garnet “Ace” Bailey, formerly of the Boston Bruins, was a passenger aboard United Airlines Flight 175 that crashed into the South Tower. Sean Lynch was a senior vice president at Cantor Fitzgerald on the 104th floor of the North Tower, which was hit by American Airlines Flight 11.
“On that day, we witnessed the very worst of mankind, but we also witnessed the very best of mankind,” said Dalton.
He also spoke about the unconditional bravery of Lynnfield’s firefighters and police officers. “These men and women make us a better community; thank you for your service,” he said.
Fire Chief Mark Tetreault spoke about the events of Jan. 23, 2005, when New York City Firefighters Brendan Cawley, Eugene Stolowski, Jeffrey Cool, Joseph DiBernardo, John Bellew and Lt. Curtis Meyran were trapped in a fire on the fourth floor of an apartment building in the Bronx. Forced to jump from 50 feet up, two of the men were killed while the other four were seriously injured. It was the deadliest day in the Fire Department’s history since 9/11 and became known as Black Sunday.
Tetreault said DiBernardo’s father, a retired deputy fire chief, went on to establish the Joseph DiBernardo Foundation. In 2011, the Lynnfield Fire Department received a grant from the foundation to purchase new lifesaving safety gear.
Seventeen years ago, Police Chief David Breen was a patrolman with the Lynnfield Police Department and was driving home after working the midnight shift when he heard that two planes had flown into the World Trade Center. “I remember never going to bed that day,” he said. “The world changed that day.”
Breen said his officers all receive critical incident training now and the department has formed strong alliances with the schools and churches in town.
Although much has been gained since the attacks, Breen said, it is also important to always remember those who never came home. “By all of us being here today, it shows me that we have not forgotten,” he said.