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IBEW Members Among Those Lost on September 11

October/November IBEW Journal

Most of the world reacted in horror to the September 11 attacks on America. Since then, a shocked nation has tried to go about its business while beginning to fight a new, uncertain kind of war.

No one will ever forget where he or she was on September 11, 2001, a new day that will live in infamy. We know where 20 IBEW brothers in New York were, along with others in the extended IBEW family. They were going about their lives, working for a living, preparing for a future that was cut short in the line of duty.

When the smoke cleared enough to take stock (the ruins of the World Trade Center are smoldering still), two locals together counted 20 among the dead and missing, 16 from Local 3 and four from Local 1212. It was originally feared that members of Local 26, Washington, D.C., working on renovations at the Pentagon had been injured or killed in the attack on the Defense Department headquarters. By September 13, however, Local 26 leaders at the convention reported that no brothers or sisters had been hurt there.

The IBEW honors its fallen brothers and sisters. No more will they go to work and bring honor to their trades as they once did. But they will never be forgotten.

After September 11,
New York Local 3 pins
 backed with black ribbon
 appeared on many lapels.

Brothers in Life, Brothers in Death

September 11 dawned bright and beautiful in New York City, the kind of clear, cloudless day that makes one glad to be alive. As usual, millions of people poured into Manhattan to go about their daily business.

Then the unthinkable happened.

Many stories have been told about the 5,000-plus individuals killed or missing in the attacks. Here is what is known about the IBEW members among their number.

Thomas Ashton, 21, a first-year apprentice who had started working on July 18, 2001, was working on the 95th floor of the North Tower of the World Trade Center with Robert Caufield, 49, a journeyman wireman. They were working for the contracting firm Denino Electric.

Also in the North Tower were Local 3 journeymen Harvey Hermer, 59, Lester Marino, 58, Jeffrey Shaw, 42, and Glenn Travers, Sr., 53. This veteran crew was working for Forest Electric on the 105th floor.

On the same floor in the same tower was a telecommunications crew from Kleinknecht Electric. They were Salvatore Fiumefreddo, 45, Joseph Romagnolo, 37, and Kenneth White, 50. All were in the telephone division of Local 3.

On the 105th floor of the South Tower, P.E. Stone Electric had a work force in place consisting of Local 3 members James Cartier, 26, a second-year apprentice, and journeymen Ralph Licciardi, 30, and Charles Lucania, 35.

Also in the South Tower on the 90th floor, was journeyman wireman Jose "Joe" Martinez, 50, working for Forest Electric. Journeymen wiremen Joseph DiPilato, 57, and Steven Strauss, 51, were last seen stuck in an elevator on the 30th floor of the South Tower. They were working for Petrocelli Electric.

Michael Lowe, 48, an employee of Liberty Electric Supply, was last seen in the basement of the complex.

Meanwhile, the four members of Local 1212 were at their posts in the World Trade Center when the planes struck. They were Gerard "Rod" Coppola of WNET-TV, Steven Jacobson of WPIX-TV, and Robert Pattison and Isaias Rivera, both of CBS.

Family Members Affected

In a tragedy of this magnitude, the effects ripple like shock waves, touching many families. Two such stories tell of other losses.

The nation was touched deeply by the bravery of the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) personnel who suffered such massive losses on September 11. One of the brave firefighters lost was Michael Haub, 34, son of Local 1212 member Helmut Haub. Michael was with Ladder 4 Company of the FDNY.

The long hand of sorrow reached across the continent as well. Lisa Frost, 22, the daughter of Local 47, Diamond Bar, California, member Tom Frost and his wife, Melanie, was a passenger on United Flight 175, originating from Bostons Logan Airport, the second airplane that struck the World Trade Center. Lisa had graduated as class valedictorian at Boston University and was going home for a visit before she started her new job in San Francisco. Tom Frost is a System Operator for Southern California Edisons Transmission and Distribution business unit at the Villa Park Substation and a 25-year member of the IBEW.

How to Help

Throughout North America, IBEW members reacted with defiance against the terrorists behind the attacks and support and sympathy for the victims.

Local 3 has established a fund to aid the families of its members and the members of Local 1212 who perished at the World Trade Center. Those wishing to help can send checks made payable to IBEW Disaster Fund NYC Inc. to:

IBEW Local Union 3
158-11 Harry Van Arsdale, Jr. Ave.
Flushing, NY 11365.

Local 47 has donated $2,800 to the Lisa Frost Scholarship Fund established at Boston University. Anyone wishing to contribute to this fund should send a check made payable to IBEW Local 47 and designate on the check that the money is for the Lisa Frost Scholarship Fund. Local 47s address is:

IBEW Local 47
600 N. Diamond Bar Boulevard
Diamond Bar, CA 91765.

Across the continent, IBEW rallied to help deal with the aftereffects of September 11. Future issues of the Journal will contain more stories of those efforts.

Attacks Hit Home

In Memory

Thomas Ashton

James Cartier

Robert Caufield

Gerard "Rod" Coppola

 Joseph DiPilato

Salvatore Fiumefreddo

Harvey Hermer

Steven Jacobson

Ralph Licciardi

Michael Lowe

 Charles Lucania

Lester Marino

Jose "Joe" Martinez

Robert Pattison

Isaias Rivera

Joseph Romagnolo

Jeffrey Shaw

Glenn Travers, Sr.

Kenneth White

 Steven Strauss