Simon Mayo's bar of soap from the WTC

Contributed by AHOTW People

Simon Mayo's bar of soap from the WTC

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My object is a bar of soap, given to me by Kenny Johannemann. He worked as a janitor at the World Trade Center in New York and on September 11, 2001, he arrived for work at 8.30. He was about to go into the building with his work mates, but changed his mind and went to get a cup of coffee. While he was getting his coffee the first plane hit the building and he ran back inside. The lift came back down with his friends on fire inside. Some he was able to help to save, others did not survive.

His was one of the many stories we heard on BBC Radio 5 Live in 2001, and on the first anniversary of 9/11 in 2002, we went to New York to meet Kenny and he gave me this bar of soap. When I finished on BBC Radio 5live in 2009, we tried to get back in touch with him but sadly found out he had taken his own life the year before. His suicide note said that he couldn't cope with everything that had happened.

Every time I see the bar of soap, I think of Kenny, another victim of 9/11.

Comments are closed for this object


  • 1 comment
  • 1. At 12:29 on 21 October 2010, Eric wrote:

    Soap and the history of soap is so much more than 9/11. Please give the history of soap its own story.(Yes 9/11 seems important now but soap is More as it has impacted history and saved millions of lives)

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