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May 25, 2007





Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer, parades and picnics with family and friends. The holiday weekend is also a time to reflect on the true meaning of Memorial Day - honoring the brave Americans who have fought to protect our country. In particular, we remember the thousands of men and women who have died serving America following 9/11, as well as their families who have suffered a great loss. This weekend we keep all those fighting abroad in our hearts and offer our hope that they will return home safely soon.

This week, we are passing along some important information from the NYC Medical Examiner's Office about the addition of Felicia Dunn-Jones to the list of WTC victims as a result of her death from a lung illness worsened by her exposure to dust and debris on 9/11. This is potentially an important development in the way the city recognizes the increasing medical concerns of those exposed to harmful contaminants at Ground Zero. We will keep you informed of any new developments.

In our 9/11 Living Memorial Feature section, we are highlighting a beautiful 9/11 memorial we visited while in Boston for last week’s workshops. The memorial pays tribute to the over 200 victims with connections to Massachusetts and New England.

I would like to remind you that VOICES office will be closed on Monday in observance of Memorial Day. All of us at VOICES wish you and your family a safe and restful holiday weekend. As always, please feel free to contact us if we can be of any assistance.


Warm Regards,


Mary Fetchet

Founding Director



Save the Date: VOICES September 11th Commemorative Events



September 10th

Information Forum


September 11th

Commemorative Luncheon




Marriott Financial Center Hotel, New York City


We hope all of you will join us for our annual events to observe the anniversary of 9/11. The VOICES staff is preparing for the upcoming Sixth Anniversary September 10th Information Forum and September 11th Commemorative Luncheon in New York City. The focus of this year's events will be the 9/11 Living Memorial… commemorating the lives and stories of September 11, 2001 and February 26, 1993. The program will include workshops, presentations and exhibits on commemoration and preservation of you personal items. The September 11th Commemorative Luncheon will be held at the Marriott Financial Center Hotel following New York City's 9/11 anniversary ceremony.


VOICES Office Closed Monday


The VOICES office will be closed Monday, May 28th in observance of Memorial Day. Our national holiday to honor those who died serving in America's armed services was officially established in the aftermath of the Civil War. Memorial Day was traditionally observed on May 30, but was moved by Congress in the 1970s to the last Monday of May to ensure a three day weekend. Some have called for the holiday to return to its traditional observance, claiming that Memorial Day's purpose is often forgotten in the hustle and bustle of the "start of summer" weekend. Read more on an informative web site dedicated to all things Memorial Day, including ways to honor the war dead from your community.


VOICES Seeks Development Director


VOICES is currently seeking a development director to spearhead our fundraising and grant writing activities. If you or someone you know may be interested in the position, please read more in the Jobs section of our website.


9/11 Living Memorial Feature


Boston Public Garden September 11th Memorial


In recognition of the need for Massachusetts and New England families to have a local site to remember, honor and mourn loved ones lost on September 11, 2001, The Massachusetts 9/11 Fund, the Mayor of Boston and Senator Edward M. Kennedy worked with the local families, the Friends of the Public Garden and the Boston Landmark Commission to place a memorial in the Boston Public Garden. 


The memorial, known as the Contemplative Garden, is dedicated to two hundred and five victims of the September 11th 2001 terrorist attacks with ties to Massachusetts and New England. The Contemplative Garden was designed by the Walker-Kluesing Design Group as a quiet, contemplative landscape located on the Arlington Street side of the Public Garden. It faces the lagoon and features benches, a path and a granite wall engraved with the names of two hundred and five victims. A moving inscription is reproduced at left.


Click to read more about the Boston Public Garden September 11 Memorial. If you have a 9/11 memorial in your hometown that you would like to add to the 9/11 Living Memorial, please contact us.




"Graduations" by Dr. Robin F. Goodman


Caps and gowns are once again in fashion as the college commencement season continues. Dr. Robin F. Goodman offers some advice for families who have mixed feelings about these important events. Dr. Goodman writes: "...For families in which a loved one died on September 11th, a graduation can be a bittersweet event. While others may be filled with joy, the graduate and family members who are missing someone special may be surprised by an array of emotions – you may feel angry at not being able to share the day with a significant person, resentful of others who did not endure the tragedy of 9/11, or proud of children moving on. However, it is important to celebrate what has been achieved, especially under such difficult circumstances. Graduations mark how far one has come and all the effort required to reach a goal. The following are some things to keep in mind..." click to read more.


Visit the Caregivers section of the VOICES for Kids website for more web links and articles on Family Life and Parenting. If you have suggestions for links to add or advice on how to improve the VOICES for Kids site, please contact us.






For the first time, the NYC Medical Examiner's Office has established exposure to WTC dust as a cause of death. In a letter this week, Medical Examiner Dr. Charles Hirsch said that dust from the twin towers contributed to the death of Felicia Dunn-Jones “beyond a reasonable doubt." Her name will be added to the official list of World Trade Center victims, and the official number of people who died as a result of the attack on the twin towers will be increased to 2,750. The determination could affect how the city will act in other cases of illness and death likely caused by breathing toxic particles at the site. Here are some facts of the case:


-Ms. Dunn-Jones (left), 42, a civil rights lawyer working a block from the WTC was engulfed in the debris cloud on 9/11. She developed a serious cough and showed other symptoms of impaired lung function. She died five months after the attacks in February 2002.


-An autopsy determined sarcoidosis, a lung disease associated with environmental hazards, as the cause of death. A recent study determined the disease occurs in WTC workers at a higher rate than the general population. (Read more about sarcoidosis)


-The Medical Examiner will amend Ms. Dunn-Jones’s death certificate to indicate that exposure to WTC dust “was contributory to her death” and change the manner of death to homicide from natural causes. Dr. Hirsch stopped short of declaring that Ms. Dunn-Jones sarcoidosis was caused by the dust, citing evidence that the disease developed prior to 9/11. However, the possibly pre-existing condition was certainly made worse by the dust, and it therefore contributed to her death.


-"The city medical examiner has now accepted what thousands of people with 9/11-related illnesses and their doctors have long understood: that ground zero dust was harmful and even deadly," Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) is quoted in New York Times coverage. Click to read the Medical examiner's statement. Rep. Maloney joined Rep. Vito Fossella (R-NY) and disabled Ground Zero responders and workers at a press conference at the WTC site today. The appearance aimed to "urge the City of New York to re-examine the medical evidence in the deaths of at least 8 Ground Zero responders and determine if their deaths can be definitively linked to exposure to WTC dust, according to a press release.


According to some health experts, Ms. Dunn-Jones case is rare and people who were exposed to WTC dust but have not yet developed symptoms of sarcoidosis are unlilkely to in the future. In fact, some patients patients show stress-related symptoms that stem from their concerns about medical problems that could develop, rather than actual medical conditions. "Most people are fine, and if they haven’t developed symptoms by now, I doubt very much they will," Dr. Joan Reibman, a pulmonologist who directs the W.T.C. Environmental Health Center at Bellevue Hospital Center, is quoted in New York Times coverage.


Read more about Ground Zero Health Issues on the VOICES website.




Key Senators Reject Independent FEMA


Senators Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) do not support removing the Federal Emergency Management Agency from the Department of Homeland Security, as proposed by Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY). Because Lieberman and Collins are the Chair and Ranking Member of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee (HSGAC), their opposition makes it unlikely that Clinton's bill, which would return FEMA to independent, cabinet-level status, has much of a chance.


"While some still call for FEMA to be taken out of DHS, I believe that would be a serious mistake," Sen. Lieberman is quoted in CongressDaily coverage. "I am confident that FEMA today, within DHS, is much stronger than it was on 9/11 and much stronger still than it was ... when Katrina struck the Gulf Coast [in 2005]." Lieberman and Collins made their comments at a HSGAC hearing Tuesday entitled: "Implementing FEMA Reform: Are We Prepared for the 2007 Hurricane Season? Click here for more Preparedness information from VOICES website.


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Copyright © 2006 Voices of September 11th.  All rights reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

VOICES of September 11 th is a nonpartisan advocacy group .
VOICES provides services and advocates for families and all those affected by September 11th; promotes public policy reform on prevention, preparedness and response to terrorism;
and builds bridges between international communities changed by terrorism.