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We're Not Leaving: 9/11 Responders Tell Their Stories of Courage, Sacrifice, and Renewal Paperback – September 6, 2011


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We're Not Leaving: 9/11 Responders Tell Their Stories of Courage, Sacrifice, and Renewal + 102 Minutes: The Unforgettable Story of the Fight to Survive Inside the Twin Towers + 9/11 Ordinary People: Extraordinary Heroes: NYC - The First Battle in the War Against Terror!
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 328 pages
  • Publisher: Greenpoint Press (September 6, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0983237026
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983237020
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #193,130 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Benjamin J. Luft, M.D., is the Edmund D. Pellegrino Professor of Medicine at SUNY Stony Brook and an internationally recognized expert in the treatment of Lyme disease and AIDS-related conditions. As a native New Yorker he was deeply impacted by the 9/11 attacks and was inspired to establish the Long Island World Trade Center Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program, which provides care to more than 6,000 disaster responders and has become an incubator for several important research and treatment programs that emphasize both mental and physical well-being. Dr. Luft has also established several important projects commemorating 9/11, including the "Remembering 9/11 Responders" oral history program.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Book Him Danno on September 11, 2011
Format: Paperback
It is easy to forget the enormity of what happened on 9/11. I remember being at work and slowly congregating in the conference room with my coworkers watching the events unfold on the big screen. It seemed unreal at the time, especially when the second plane hit. For me 9/11 was something that happened on television; consequently it never felt quite real to me. It is easy to forget what really transpired that day. And if that happens to me, someone who was 32 at the time, it is a tragedy. Multiply me by thousands and we have another national tragedy developing.

At the end of the day I think books like this one should be required reading for all Americans, so we never forget what happened. To all those innocent people who died that day just going about their life, to the first responders who died trying to save people, and to the numerous first responders who continue to this day to suffer and die directly as a result of 9/11.

This book delves into this last group, probably the most forgotten group of all those affected by 9/11. It tells the stories of those whose jobs took them to ground zero on September 11th, and kept them their over the ensuing weeks, months and years. The enormity of their efforts and sacrifices has been ignored, and if we let it, will be lost.

Imagine the long term effects, both physically and mentally, of spending months searching a burning pile of metal and mortar for the pulverized bodies of almost 3000 individuals while breathing in 3 inches of dust the whole time. To a person, everyone of the 33 responders (or spouse) say they all would do it again, but through their stories they explain what a truly devastating nightmare 9/11 was. It is their own experiences and it makes 9/11 real, not just some television show you saw 10 years ago.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Todd Thompson on September 10, 2011
Format: Paperback
Layer upon layer of heroic stories, opinions, and interpretations of 9/11 have taken on the character and power of myth in the ten years since tragedy struck the United States in the form of hijacked airliners exploding into New York's World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington D.C. Not forgotten is the attempt of other hijackers to attack government buildings in Washington D.C., only to be thwarted by courageous passengers before the mission could be accomplished.

Dr. Benjamin J. Luft is the Director of the Long Island Medical Monitoring and Treatment Program at State University of New York. In his work there, Luft has provided care for over 6,000 responders and workers who were exposed first-hand not only to the tragedy of 9/11, but also to the health hazards of "the pile" on which they worked for over a year to clear the site.

His book, We're Not Leaving: 9/11 Responders Tell Their Stories of Courage, Sacrifice, and Renewal, is a collection of first-hand accounts drawn from the voices of the people whose lives have been marked permanently by doing society's hardest work of removing the sad, visible reminders of a nation's vulnerability.

This layer of stories and reflections are those at the core, those in the pre-interpretive time period in which the concerns were the facts, the people, the deceased, and the horror of never knowing if one can take another breath before succumbing to the death that surrounds them all.

Lost in the ten years since, amidst the growing American story of its heroes and its struggle to memorialize the events in the most meaningful way, are the accounts of those who were most exposed to the hazardous aftermath of the rubble, the random body parts, and the suffocating air and odors of "the pile.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Solid Citizen on September 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
I have read widely on the topic of 9/11 and must say that reading this book was one of the most meaningful and compelling experiences I have had in this endeavor. The book contains the oral histories taken of a variety of responders to the disaster - cops, firemen, emergency workers, laborers, construction workers and others who were on the scene from the moment the first plane hit and through the months and months it took to reclaim the site. Their stories are stunning, moving, heartwrenching and inspiring. The doctor who compiled the book runs a clinic for responders on Long Island, which he established shortly after the disaster. (The story of the genesis of the clinic and this project is a fascinating one it itself). Apparently the oral history project grew out of the work in this clinic and was actually generated at the clinic. This special setting seems to have allowed the interviewers to elicit particularly intimate, revelatory testimony from these people who sacrificed so much for our community, and continue to do so. They are stunningly articulate and the reader is able to vicariously experience the catharsis that these people seem to have experienced from telling their stories. The book makes us think about what motivates people to rush toward a disaster, rather than away from it. What calls people to service of others. How do we, as a society, draw the proper lessons from this experience. What does it teach us about the fabric of our society? One comes away feeling humbled and truly inspired. As my title says: a Must Read! As a footnote, the proceeds from the book go to benefit the clinic and a scholarship fund for the children of the responders.
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