‘Dust Lady’ could be added to 9/11 memorial 14 years after attack

Susan Edelman New York Post

The death of “Dust Lady” Marcy Borders may raise a thorny issue for the city medical examiner and the 9/11 Memorial: Should her name be added to the tragic toll?

Marcy Borders' name could fill this empty space on a bronze panel at the 9/11 Memorial. Photo: Helayne Seidman

Marcy Borders’ name could fill this empty space on a bronze panel at the 9/11 Memorial. Photo: Helayne Seidman

Borders, whose eerie image caked in gray dust from the World Trade Center collapse captured the horror of 9/11, died of stomach cancer last week at age 42.

Three others caught in the dust and debris, but who died months or years later, have been declared homicide victims along with those killed that day — and were added to the official 9/11 toll, which stands at 2,753 [sic – 4 survivors like Borders have been added]. Their names are engraved on bronze panels around pools at the 9/11 Memorial at Ground Zero.

The ME’s Office told The Post it will consider whether to add Borders’ name, if her family requests.

“I’m 2,000 percent sure that this is a 9/11 tragedy, another one that you add to the list,” said Marcy’s cousin, John Borders, a Port Authority police officer.

The family is discussing whether to request that her name be added, Borders said. “The ultimate decision will be a group effort.”

Marcy Borders, of Bayonne, NJ, was a month into a new job at Bank of America on September 11, 2001, when the first plane slammed into the north tower where she worked. She fled into the street as the south tower fell.

Marcy Borders Photo: Getty Images

Marcy Borders Photo: Getty Images

In the years ­after the terror attacks, Borders battled depression and addiction to crack cocaine. Last year, she was diagnosed with stage 3 stomach cancer.

“How do you go from being healthy to waking up the next day with cancer?” she told The Jersey Journal.

The federal 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund covers stomach cancer, among many malignancies, for WTC responders, downtown workers and residents exposed to toxic dust and smoke on 9/11 and afterward.

But for a death to be classified as a 9/11 homicide, the exposure must have occurred on that day, the ME says. And evidence must show the illness was caused by that exposure, not other factors.

“We will perform a comprehensive review using all available health information, such as medical records and social history,” said spokeswoman Julie Bolcer.

The three victims belatedly added to the 9/11 death toll include  Felicia Dunn-Jones, 42, who was covered in ash as the towers fell and died of sarcoidosis, a lung disease, five months later; Leon Heyward, who helped evacuate disabled employees from 42 Broadway and died of lymphoma at age 45 in 2008; and Jerry Borg, whose death at age 63 from pulmonary sarcoidosis, after he breathed in dust from the WTC collapse, was ruled a homicide in June 2011. [Note – there has never been any talk of any of names of the 1,700 recovery workers who died of site-related illnesses being added to the memorial, nor the names of other survivors who have died of linked illnesses.]

Borders’ name would be the first added after the memorial’s unveiling in September 2011. The sole blank space is above Borg’s name.

“Names can be added,” said memorial spokesman Michael Frazier.

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