While the entire nation was rocked by the events of September 11, fire departments suffered a unique loss.
In total, 343 New York City Firefighters died as they ran into Towers 1 and 2 of the World Trade Center in an attempt to help thousands escape the burning inferno. Hundreds more, including civilian helpers, have died since from the rescue, recovery and clean-up work at Ground Zero.
This Monday, goverment officials announced that the National Institute for Occupational Safety will add 58 different types of cancers to the list of illnesses now considered results of exposure to the toxic fumes and debris near at Ground Zero.
As part of California Task Force 3 Urban Search and Rescue, right after the attacks of September 11, 2001, Mountain View Firefighter Chris de la Ossa joined other first responders from California and went to work "the pile" at Ground Zero.
This picture is of a plaque at Mountain View Fire Station No. 1 that serves as a reminder of the sacrifice of firefighters during and after at Ground Zero. Also, the engine and trucks all now have 9/11 related-inscriptions on them.