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An EMS who worked on 9-11 reflects on what he remembers

Published: Sep. 7, 2021 at 8:26 PM CDT
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TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Peter Rosie was a 40-year -old, emergency medical services responder in New York City on September 11, 2001.

It was a shift he will never forget. He was woken up from a phone call from his girlfriend.

“She said to turn on the tv and I did and it didn’t look that bad, but all I had to do was walk one flight of stairs because we were one floor from the roof, and that is when I saw the second plane hit in front of me,” said Rosie.

Rosie jumped right into the action.

“I threw on my turnout gear and my uniform and I jumped on my son’s bike, it was a 5-year-olds bike, it looked ridiculous but it got me there quickly and I didn’t know what to think, I just knew it was big and they threw a radio at me and said here is your partner and then just boom and going the opposite direction and going oh my god this is big,” he said.

Rosie said they drove toward the towers, as everyone else ran in the opposite direction, fighting thru debris.

“Just as we arrive, the South Tower was collapsing and everything went black, I had five patients just come right out of the smoke, three were police officers, two female and one male who has having a heart attack, and one civilian whose arm was amputated,” said Rosie.

He said the hospital was a sea of scrubs, health care workers, lined up waiting for patients.

By the time they returned to Ground Zero, the North Tower had fallen.

“I turned on the radio on my way back to ground zero and I am getting all this news on what happened, it was overwhelming, and driving in the pitch dark, I couldn’t see,”.

He says it was almost impossible to communicate with anyone amid the chaos, he spent the day at ground zero, before finally speaking to his girlfriend.

“She thought I was at Bellview the whole time, and she had no idea that I had almost gotten killed in the collapse and when I got home she was sleeping so I am glad she was spared from worrying,” explained Rosie.

That day inspired Rosie - a veteran of the British military - to join the U.S. Army, which brought him to Fort Riley, Kansas.

As hard as the day is to remember, he says he cannot forget.

“It is kind of like a defensive mechanism to not think about it because it might be a bit overwhelming,” he said.

Peter Rosie will head to New York for the 9/11 Anniversary, it will be his first time seeing the memorial.

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