Firefighter's Son Remembers 9/11 And Sandy09:40
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On this day 12 years ago, Army veteran Patrick Dowdell lost his firefighter dad.

Lieutenant Kevin Dowdell was killed when the South Tower of the World Trade Center collapsed.

Kevin Dowdell's body was never found, though Patrick did recover his father's engraved firefighter's tool known as a halligan.

Patrick will remember his dad at the World Trade Center site today, although he says he and his family, "think about our father and we think about 9/11 everyday."

Kevin Dowdell's halligan, which was recovered from the wreckage of the World Trade Center. (Courtesy of Patrick Dowdell)
Kevin Dowdell's halligan, which was recovered from the wreckage of the World Trade Center. (Courtesy of Patrick Dowdell)

Today Patrick will also think back to how he nearly lost the halligan when his home in Breezy Point, N.Y., was flooded by Superstorm Sandy.

Breezy Point is where many of the families of 9/11 victims live, and where about 150 homes burned down in the wake of the massive storm.

Even though Patrick saved his father's halligan from the floodwaters, he lost other mementos from his father.

"The reason it's hard is that you want to be able to pass those things down the line," he said.

But despite the loss of his dad on 9/11 and the destruction of his neighborhood by the storm, Patrick remains optimistic.

"We know how to bounce back," he said. "We've kind of learned, unfortunately, from these different events, how to deal, how to cope and how to move on."

Guest

  • Patrick Dowdell, son of New York City firefighter Lt. Kevin Dowdell, who died on Sept. 11, 2001.

This segment aired on September 11, 2013.

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