On 9/11, NYPD Remembers Fallen Members with Social Media Memorial

Polly Mosendz Newsweek

In honor of the 14th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, the New York Police Department is using social media to remember service members who died in the attacks or from illnesses and injuries sustained that day or in the aftermath.

NYPD officers, FDNY firefighters and Port Authority Police on the 9/11 Memorial Plaza during ceremonies marking the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center. Photo Chip Somodevilla Reuters

NYPD officers, FDNY firefighters and Port Authority Police on the 9/11 Memorial Plaza during ceremonies marking the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Center. Photo Chip Somodevilla Reuters

Starting just after midnight Friday, the police department’s Twitter account began sending out messages to honor fallen officers. Each message features an officer’s name, date of death, rank and the words “End of Tour.”

The online memorial includes officers who worked for more than a dozen different branches of the NYPD. Twenty-three officers were among the more than 2,700 people that died the day of the attacks. More than 50 have since died from illnesses related to their exposure to smoke and other hazards at ground zero, according to the NYPD.

The NYPD also features photographs of fallen service members on Facebook. “In the rescue and recovery efforts that followed [the attacks], thousands of New York City Police Department personnel worked long hours and days on end, initially in the hope of finding survivors and afterward to recover their fallen comrades and others who died on 9/11,” the NYPD said in a 2014 statement about its online memorial. “Exposed to toxic smoke and other hazards, many members of the service who engaged in rescue and recovery efforts developed cancers and other fatal illnesses. We mourn and honor all who perished in service of the City and the country.”

The department began its social media remembrance with a tribute to Sergeant John Coughlin, a veteran of the Marine Corps who left behind three daughters when he was killed on 9/11. Coughlin joined the NYPD in 1983.

Also among those remembered was Officer Daniel C. Conroy, who served in the NYPD’s Property Clerk division for 19 years and died five years after the attacks, on December 3, 2006. He helped register 54,000 items from Ground Zero and worked in the morgue after the attacks.

The NYPD also read the names of those who died while serving in the police department at a ceremony Friday at 1 Police Plaza, its headquarters in Manhattan.

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