Area runners will shadow the footsteps of a fallen Brooklyn firefighter to commemorate the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center.
The second annual Stephen Siller Tunnel To Tower 5k Run/Walk/Roll will be held at 9:30 a.m. Sunday at the W.A. Harriman State Office Campus in Albany.
The run is named after Brooklyn firefighter Stephen Siller, who on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, had just completed his shift and was on his way home from work when he heard the news of the attack at the Twin Towers. He returned to his station, gathered his gear and headed toward the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel to join his squad at the World Trade Center. The tunnel had closed to traffic, so he abandoned his vehicle, put on his firefighting gear and ran the three miles through the tunnel to the Twin Towers, where he was last seen.
He left behind a wife and five children.
A run is held annually on the last Sunday in September in New York City that retraces Siller’s footsteps, starting at the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel and ending at Ground Zero.
In recognition of the 11th anniversary of the attacks, shadow runs of the Tunnel To Towers Race are being held in cities across the country to honor and support all first responders and the men and women who have served our nation in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Proceeds from the Albany run/walk/roll will help fund the building of a wheelchair-accessible home in Nassau for 13-year U.S. Air Force veteran Tech Sgt. Joseph Wilkinson, who incurred extensive neurological damage during his tour of duty in Iraq.
Event organizers hope to raise $25,000.
Participants of all ages and athletic abilities are encouraged to register for the run/walk/roll online at www.t2trun.org.
The cost to participate is $30 for the general public and $25 for active and veteran military members, firefighters and police.
The event is sponsored by the Capital Region NY2 Chapter of the Blue Star Mothers of America Inc., in partnership with The Stephen Siller Tunnel To Towers Foundation.
The Capital Region NY2 Chapter of the Blue Star Mothers of America, Inc. provides support to troops, veterans and Gold Star families. The group has sent over 1,000 Freedom Boxes to deployed troops, volunteers at the John J. McKenna Military Courtesy Room at Albany International Airport and also welcomes home troops at the airport.