Thousands run Tunnel-to-Towers to honor fallen 9/11 heroes

Firefighters wearing full gear and waving American flags dashed past the Red Hook starting line of the Tunnel to Towers run on Sept. 30, which organizers stage each year to honor firefighter Stephen Siller’s journey on foot through the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to the Twin Towers on 9/11.
Photo by Trey Pentecost

BY ANTHONY ROTUNNO

It was a run to remember!

Photo by Milo Hess
This year’s run raised $2 million for the Siller Foundation, which offers support to the families of those who dedicate their lives to public service.

More than 30,000 do-gooders from around the world turned out for a 5k walk-run fund-raiser that honored first responders who lost their lives in the 9/11 attacks 17 years ago.

This year’s Tunnel to Towers run, whose route through the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel to the World Trade Center commemorates the run Park Slope firefighter Stephen Siller took to the Twin Towers on foot in 60 pounds of gear on that fateful day, drew droves of big-hearted New Yorkers, international participants from England, some 2,500 cadets from West Point, and runners representing Gold Star families who lost kin in battle — a contingent that turned out in bigger numbers than ever before, according to an event rep.

Many of the firefighters participating also ran in gear like Siller, hoofing through the tunnel from Brooklyn to the finish line near the World Trade Center.

Following the main event, participants mingled at a post-race celebration that included a free barbecue, performances by country musician Darryl Worley and West Point’s Benny Havens Band, and watching attendee Katelyn Traut walk away with keys to a brand-new car she won for collecting more donations than any other person in this year’s competition.

The run raised more than $2 million, according to a rep, which went toward the Siller Foundation, an organization the late firefighter’s family established after his death that provides financial aid to families of heroes who dedicate their lives to serving their country.

Photo by Milo Hess
West Point cadets cross the finish line of the Tunnel to Towers run on Sept. 30.

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