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Thread: Remembering Rick Resorla

  1. #1
    Patria Povo's Avatar
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    Remembering Rick Rescorla



    27 May 1939 - 11 September 2001


    On September 11th, 2001, Rick Rescorla saved the lives of thousands of people. When the south tower fell that morning, America had lost a patriot, and a true hero. September 11th, was not this man’s story. It was just the last chapter of his story. Rick Rescorla is a true American hero with a story so epic, and so wonderful, that more people need to know about him. This group is just a way to help that happen. At the bottom of the page is photos and a video of Rick.
    ----------------

    Rick Rescorla was an amazing man and a true American hero. Rick was not born in the United States; he was actually born in Hayle, Cornwall, England. Born in 1940, Rick grew up in the post war environment of World War II and the rise of the Iron Curtain. At the age of sixteen, Rick joined the British Army, was a paratrooper, and fought communist-backed insurgencies in Cyprus from 1957 to 1960 and then in Rhodesia from 1960 to 1963. Those experiences, along with his childhood helped make Rick fiercely anti-communist.

    Following the British withdraw from Rhodesia, he came to the United States and joined the Army. By 1965 he was a platoon commander with the 7th Cavalry, and was fighting against communist forces once again, this time in Vietnam.

    Rescorla knew war very well by the time he showed up to Vietnam. His men did not. He would see to that. To steady them, to break their concentration away from the fear that grips a man, when he realizes that there are hundreds of men very close by, who want to kill him, Rescorla would sing. Mostly he sang dirty songs with lyrics that would stun a sailor. Interspersed with the lyrics, though, was the stern voice of command: “Fix bayonets…on liiiiine…reaaaa-dy…forward.” It was a voice straight from Waterloo, or from the Somme in the first World War, implacable, impeccable, and absolutely impossible to disobey.

    He fought in the famous Ia Drang battle at LZ X-RAY in November 1965. It was the first major battle in the Vietnam War, and a costly one. How he carried himself in the Ia Drang, is legendary in the Cavalry, and inspires to this day. The medals he won at LZ X-RAY, and elsewhere in Vietnam (Silver Star, Bronze Star with Oak Leaf Cluster, Purple Heart, and more), he put in a box and never displayed. He always felt that he wasn't a hero, and that "the heroes were the ones who died" he said. (Some of his exploits at LZ X-RAY are documented in the book "We Were Soldiers Once...and Young" written by his commander in the battle, retired General Hal Moore, and a former UPI reporter who was there at the time, Joe Galloway. It was later made into a movie called We Were Soldiers).

    Following his service in Vietnam, Rick became a U.S. citizen, went to school on his G.I. Bill, and went to work. He tried his hand at a few profesions before finding himself in the security business. Eventually, he would find himself vice-president for security at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, one of Wall Street's largest brokerage houses. The company was situated at the World Trade Center, and had 3,700 employees in the complex — 2,700 employees in the south tower on floors forty-four through seventy-four and 1,000 employees in Building Five across the plaza.

    As a security professional, and former soldier, it was his job to think like the enemy. In 1990, he saw that the World Trade Center was a likely target for a terrorist attack as it was a symbol of American economic power. He did a security survey of the building and concluded, with his friend Dan Hill's help, that driving a truck bomb into the basement near a key supporting column could bring down the entire complex. As a result of those findings, Rescorla arranged a meeting with a security official in the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which managed the building. “They told Rick to kiss off,” Hill recalled. “They told him, ‘You lease your stories, you worry about that. The rest of the building is not your concern.’”

    On February 26, 1993, in an attempt to collapse the towers, terrorists set off a homemade chemical bomb packed inside a rental truck, that was parked in the basement of the WTC complex.

    In response to the attacks, measures where taken to prevent future car bombings, but little more was done. Rescorla knew the failure of the attack on the WTC would cause another attempt. He (along with his team) thought the terrorists' next attempt would be to fly a plane, possibly filled with chemical or biological weapons, into one of the towers. He advised Morgan Stanley executives that the company should move from the Twin Towers to a safer, less visable location. But the company's lease at the WTC went until 2006, so until then, little would change. Rick decided that the next best thing , would be to practice evacuation drills. He pressed the company into conducting regular drills, even though some employees grumbled and joked about them. Every few months, all 2,700 employees in the South Tower would be marched, with Rescorla at the bullhorn, in an arduous trek down the long winding stairwell, of one of the world's highest skyscrapers, and out of the building, just for practice. Another 1,000 employees would be evacuated from the Morgan Stanley offices nearby. For years this went on. The more he drilled them, the better and faster at the evacuations they became.

    On the morning of September 11th, 2001, there was no hesitation. A short time after the first aircraft hit, an official from the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (owner the Trade Center towers) called.

    “Everyone in the building should stay put because there was no danger”, the Port Authority man said.

    Rick shot back: "Piss off, you son of a bitch. Everything above where that plane hit is going to collapse, and it's going to take the whole building with it. I'm getting my people the ******** out of here." He recounted the exchange in a telephone call to his longtime friend Dan Hill.

    He then ran off and began the evacuation. He ordered everyone to evacuate the building immediately. Bullhorn in hand he guided them out. That steady voice of authority and command, giving strength as they entered the stairwells.

    "Slow down, pace yourself,"
    "Today is a day to be proud to be an American."

    His reassurances kept people calm, and maintained order. Morgan Stanley's employees quickly and calmly made their way down and out of the tower. By the time the second aircraft hit the south tower at 9:07 a.m., most of the company's employees were already out. Rescorla's work, though, was not finished. Three employees were missing. He and two assistants went back to look for them. Rick was last seen on the tenth floor of the burning tower. He was asked to leave and save himself, to which he assured,

    “I will as soon as I make sure everyone else is out.”

    He died when the building collapsed a short time later. Out of 3,700 employees, Morgan Stanley lost only six, including Rescorla. Rick Rescorla gave his life being the person that he always was. Sepember 11th, was not his story, it was just the last chapter in it.

    http://www.nationalreview.com/commen...ertz092002.asp

    http://www.mudvillegazette.com/archives/000307.html

    http://www.rickrescorla.com/

    http://www.newyorker.com/archive/200...a_fact_stewart
    Last edited by Patria Povo; 09-11-2009 at 03:43 PM.
    Royal Australian Army Medical Corp: We Bury Our Mistakes!

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    brewskzilla's Avatar
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    Being Christian, I dont believe in Valhalla... But if there WERE one, he'd be there...
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    7.62guy's Avatar
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    a great man

    and a man that knew what to do, when to do it, and how to get it done. it has been said by many leaders of men that those traits are what makes good men great men. we often hear people say he's '' THE'' man in regards to men like him. i think his response to hearing something like that said about him would be- just ''A'' man. but the world has been better because of him, the sign of true greatness in a man. my .02 worth.
    For those who fought for it, freedom holds a flavor the protected will never know. Those who hammer their guns into plows-will plow for those who do not. Thomas Jefferson

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    Norton's Avatar
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    I never knew.. Men like him are the steel rods in the crumbling concrete of American society.
    We thought about it for a long time, "Endeavor to persevere." And when we had thought about it long enough, we declared war on the Union

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    Senior Veteran jbruney's Avatar
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    A man of action and deeds.
    Joe
    COG#1453

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    One of my heroes since I was 10.

    His story can be read in both "We Were Soldiers Once, And Young..." and "Heart Of A Soldier", co-written by his friend Dan Hill.

    I strongly recommend both books.

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    Patria Povo's Avatar
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    bump
    Royal Australian Army Medical Corp: We Bury Our Mistakes!

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    Norton's Avatar
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    I had to post this quote from Rick concerning November 15 1965

    “ There were American and NVA bodies everywhere. My area was where Lieutenant Geoghegan's platoon had been. There were several dead NVA around his platoon command post. One dead trooper was locked in contact with a dead NVA, hands around the enemy's throat

    The USA was fighting real men, not rich college boys who's soft hands had never gotten dirty.. Rich pansies who steal an airplane from unarmed civilians and wreck it into the side of a building.. They could not carry the Viet Cong's or NVA's water.. Let alone the Germans, Japs, Red Chinese, Soviets, Confederates, Spanish, Mexicans, British Redcoats or North American Indians

    These maggots can't build a U boat.. Fleet carrier, Japanese Zero, Tiger Tank, MIG, T 34
    ICBM, Space ship an AK 47 or anything that takes brains.. They couldn't plan Pearl Harbor or overun run the Alamo.
    They just prey on who is not looking.
    But when we know.. they die
    Just like Skanksville PA and Flight 93
    Last edited by Norton; 10-27-2012 at 07:02 PM.
    We thought about it for a long time, "Endeavor to persevere." And when we had thought about it long enough, we declared war on the Union

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    Amazing story, a true leader and hero

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    shibbykins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jdowney View Post
    Amazing story, a true leader and hero
    +1

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