RICK RESCORLA -
|BRAVERY | Rick Rescorla rescued thousands in the
World Trade Centre attack|
9/11 - two years ago, it would be
difficult to imagine how these two numbers could embody so much tragedy,
grief and fear. But for one man, the tragedy of September 11, was
the terrorist attack he had feared for years.
Cornishman Rick Rescorla’s heroism is legendary. What
is less well known, in this country at least, were his prophetic views
Inside Out pays tribute to his bravery, his spirit and
his astonishing foresight.
|After a successful
army career, Rick Rescorla became director of security for Morgan
Born in the Cornish town of Hayle, Rick’s first encounter
with America came in the form of GIs preparing for D-Day in the town.
They inspired Rick’s adventurous spirit and his never failing love for
Rick and his friend and confidante Dan Hill both enlisted
in the United States Army.
A highly decorated war hero, Rick served the USA as platoon
leader in Vietnam.
For all his success in the US, Cornwall was never far
from Rick’s heart and he returned regularly.
Rick retired from his army career in 1968. Via a career
as a university law professor, Rick became director of security for Morgan
Stanley Dean Witter (previously Dean Witter) in their offices in the World
|Rick always feared
a terrorist attack on the Twin Towers|
It was here that Rick Rescorla was to predict with startling
accuracy the horrors he himself would later face in that building.
Speaking in an interview in 1998, Rick predicted that,
"Terrorist forces can tie up conventional forces and bring them to their
Just one man willing to give his life for what he believes
in, chooses the time and place and there is no way that any soldiers can
be 100% alert."
But alert he was and in 1990 he asked old friend and ex-special
forces soldier Dan Hill to evaluate the risks to the World Trade Centre.
The garage was pin pointed as a weak point, but no official response to
their report was forthcoming.
|September 11 2001|
08:40 Eastern Daylight Time,Time American
Airlines Flight 11 is reported to have been hijacked.
08:43 United Airlines Flight 175 from Boston
to Los Angeles is also reported hijacked.
08:46 American Airlines Flight 11 crashes
into the north tower of the World Trade Centre.
09:03 The world watches as a second passenger
jet, United Airlines Flight 175, crashes into the south tower of
the Trade Centre causing a devastating explosion.
09:40 American Airlines Flight 77, carrying
64 people from Washington to Los Angeles, crashes into the Pentagon
09:58 An emergency despatcher in Pennsylvania
receives a call from a passenger on United Flight 93 who says they
are being hijacked.
10:03 United Airlines Flight 93 crashes 80
miles south east of Pittsburgh.
10:05 The south tower of the World Trade
Centre collapses. Many firefighters, emergency services and workers
are still in the tower.
10:29 The north tower of the World Trade
In 1993, a van packed with explosives was detonated 30
feet from where they had predicted.
1993 should have been a wake-up all for all. Rick pressed
Dean Witter to move out of the Twin Towers believing that the next attack
would come by air.
Eight years later, Rick Rescorla would personally escort
all 20 floors of Morgan Stanley employees out of the building and to safety.
The day that changed the world
8.46am, September 11 2001, American Airlines, flight 11
crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Centre.
Amid the panic and desperation that ensued, Rick Rescorla
could be found guiding people out of the south tower, despite speaker
announcements in the building to the contrary advising people to remain
9.03am and the second passenger plane crashed into the
south tower. Despite fears that the building would fall, Rick returned
to the building again, singing Cornish songs in an effort to keep spirits
10.05am, the south tower collapsed and Rick Rescorla lost
His memory lives on
In all, Rick Rescorla lead 2,700 men and women to safety.
Despite his valiant deeds, Rick hasn’t yet received official
recognition, but in his Cornish birthplace, the campaign continues for
Official recognition aside, Rick Rescorla’s bravery and
selflessness has touched thousands - not only those he helped to save,
but their loved ones too, ensuring his memory will never die.