9/11 Responders Not Asked to Memorial

The September 11 first responders have not been invited to the 10th anniversary commemoration—a snub that many said they see as a “big betrayal.” “I feel I’ve been robbed of my way to pay tribute,” said first responder Denise Villamaria. New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office confirmed Monday that the first responders had not been invited, and in a statement a spokesman said the commemoration ceremony is for victims’ families. Many of the firefighters, police officers, and other city employees see the decision as an attempt to push many of the untreated ailments they are suffering into the background. “It’ll bring up the fact that we’re basically walking dead and that we’re not being treated,” said first responder Bonnie Giebfried. In addition to the victims’ families, the ceremony will be attended by several politicians, including former President George W. Bush and President Obama.