Tunnel to Towers

Steve Burns/WCBS 880

Thousands Join Tunnel To Towers Race Honoring 9/11 First Responder

September 30, 2018 - 11:40 am

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- Thousands of people turned out Sunday morning for the Tunnel to Towers 5K Run & Walk.

The race is held every year in honor of first responders who died while trying to rescue people from the fallen towers on Sept. 11, 2001.

Runners will retrace the steps of one of the 343 city firefights killed during the 9/11 terror attacks.

Stephen Siller was on his way home from work when he turned back around, strapped on his gear and ran through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to get to Ground Zero.

Siller’s brother, Frank Siller, spoke with WCBS 880 to discuss the race and what it means for his family.

“What does a firefighter do? He went back and got his gear, drove to the mouth of the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel – where it was closed for security reasons – strapped the sixty pounds of gear onto his back and ran through that tunnel,” Frank said. “We were so proud as a family that we needed to start a foundation to honor what he did and so many other people did that day.”

The foundations list of activities is a long it has paid off mortgages for families of fallen first responders and is looking to build new homes for Gold Star families.

Frank Siller said the foundation is also looking to build modified homes for the “most catastrophically injured service members” across the country.

While Siller said he wishes his brother could still be here today, he told WCBS 880 he was grateful roughly 30,000 people showed up for this year’s run.

“I’m just so humbled and blown away to be honest with you,” he said, “because we never expected this to happen.”