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New York firefighters deliver petition on WTC Memorial
( 2003-10-22 09:57) (Xinhua)

A group of firefighters Tuesday delivered a petition with more than 65,000 signatures to New York state governor George Pataki, hoping that he will influence the decision of memorial designers to give rescuers special recognition.

The petition for a Fallen 9-11 Fallen Heroes Memorial has lobbied for months to separately list the names of the more than 400 firefighters, police officers and other rescue workers killed in the line of duty on Sept.11."One hundred years from now, people should know what went on that day," said Fire Lt. Jim McCaffrey, whose brother-in-law, Battalion Chief Orio Palmer, was killed at the trade center.

McCaffrey said the group does not want a separate memorial, but wants the rescue workers' names, units and badge numbers to listed next to their names, and wants the workers' names to be grouped together on any memorial.

"The governor has made clear that the creation of a memorial befitting the heroes who died that tragic day is his top priority and the decisions regarding the memorial are now in the hands of a distinguished jury which has been entrusted with the important responsibility of selecting the winning memorial design," Pataki spokeswoman Mollie Fullington said Tuesday.

Next month, the 13-person jury is expected to disclose the names of finalists selected to design a memorial at the site. A record 5,200 groups and individuals submitted design proposals for the memorial to the Feb. 26, 1993 bombing of the trade center as well as the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks in New York, at the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania.

The firefighters' group has been backed by former New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who has said the rescue workers deserve some form of special recognition, while victims' relatives have said that no victims should be separated into a special class.

The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation has adopted guidelines stipulating that any design should "honor the loss of life equally and the contributions of all without establishing any hierarchies."

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