A new bill could preserve the stories of 9/11 first responders for future generations.
Representatives Peter King and Steve Israel announced a bill Monday morning that would give 9/11 first responders the chance to tell their stories and potentially have them preserved in the Library of Congress. The 9/11Oral History Project was started by Dr. Benjamin Luft, director of the World Trade Center Medical Monitoring Program at SUNY Stony Brook. He started collecting stories on Long Island in 2002.
John Feal, a ground zero construction worker founded the “Feal Good Foundation,” which advocates for 9/11 first responders. He was asked to join the project to help collect more stories. He said that telling their stories and having them heard is a huge part of the healing process for first responders. “9/11 happened and we can’t change that, but we’re given a chance now to tell our stories intimately,” Feal said.
Feal also emphasized that interviews will not be edited and first responders will be able to vividly explain experiences on 9/11, and hardships since. Feal said “we will be etched in the Library of Congress for history, and that’s vital because the younger generations need to know what these thousands of men and women did for this great country.”