You are here

September 11th Attacks on the World Trade Center

Nearly 2,800 lives lost including 54 union trades people in September 11th Attacks on the World Trade Center.

“Our world has dramatically changed in the months since my last communication.  While no part of America has been unaffected, for those of us living and working in the region of Ground Zero, the impact has been daily, potent and ever present. IATSE members, like so many working people from so many fields, actively participated, contributing their skills, services and time in the immediate aftermath of the September 11 attack.  Over 100 members of Local 52 Motion Picture Studio Mechanics were on the scene at Ground Zero lighting it to facilitate the rescue operations.  About an equal number or more members of Theatrical Stage Union, Local One helped prepare the conversion of Yankee Stadium into the outdoor arena it became for the memorial service for the families of the firefighters, policemen and rescue workers lost at the World Trade Center.

Other IA members made equally important if less direct contributions by agreeing to reduced wages in the first weeks following to prop the Broadway theatres that were with rare exceptions in dire circumstances.  Their generosity enabled many shows that were about to fold a chance to survive.  

The IATSE also contributed much needed money to the World Trade Center Fund ($50,000) and to the Walsh/Di Tolla/Spivak Foundation Fund to help the victims.  I am proud of our involvement, responsibility and generosity.  I am equally certain that these acts have been replicated in places throughout the country as well.  And as this year comes to a close and we have all been chastened by September 11, we must focus on the future and hope for some joy in the holidays coming up.  Perhaps, symbolically, IATSE’s move into new headquarters in New York, heralds happier times for all of us.  Based on our response to the horrendous events of September, my heart is gladdened by the involvement of all of us with our larger national community.  We will need the toughness, strength, generosity that IA members have exhibited in response to the World Trade Center disaster.  Clearly, even if we escape further dramatic events like that one, we will be facing economic problems requiring an equal measure of those qualities.  I am confident in our ability to meet the demands of our times.” --Thomas C.  Short, International President