Unselfish efforts

Rescue workers: They have been a beacon of hope during these grim days.

September 15, 2001

AS PRESIDENT BUSH reminded us yesterday, this week's murderous attacks have spawned unselfishness of massive proportions. And in his visits to the Pentagon and to the World Trade Center he has paid tribute to the rescue workers who continue to risk their lives to save others in the aftermath of Tuesday's events.

We all owe a giant debt to the more than 300 firefighters and at least 57 police officers reported as missing who worked heroically to help office workers escape the inferno at the World Trade Center.

Neither will this grateful nation forget those who continue to sift through the unstable rubble in search of victims of the twin towers' collapse. Some of the firefighters, iron workers, welders and others are working 20 hours at a time under dangerous conditions.

And they carry on even as their hopes are raised and dashed by false reports that more survivors have been found.

Workers at the Pentagon toil under similar conditions, the stress heightened by a mindless bomb threat that interrupted their search efforts.

The public has appropriately shown its appreciation for the rescue workers, bringing them flowers and food. One unforgettable image from television has been of weary workers being cheered by New Yorkers who have gathered just outside the police lines in lower Manhattan.

These workers have been bright rays of hope amid this grim tragedy.

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