September 11, 2001 brought the world some of the most tragic scenes in recent history. Many families were broken, and many heroes stepped forward, willing to lay down their lives to search for survivors.
One of those heroes was George Howard, a Port Authority police officer who was off-duty when the World Trade Center North Tower was attacked. He immediately leaped into action as a volunteer firefighter – one of the first to arrive on the scene that day to help rescue the people trapped inside.
This was actually the second time George used his day off to respond to a terrorist attack on the WTC. The first was in 1993 when a bombing occoured and he saved the lives of several children stuck in an elevator shaft. George Howard is credited with helping save over 25,000 lives on 9/11, before he was lost when the tower collapsed. He was 45.
"To me, George Howard’s Port Authority police badge #1012, with its bent metal and scarred plating, symbolizes the…
George Howard’s memory lives on in the hearts of those who love him, and is now renewed in the TSA explosives detection pup who was named for him, Hhoward. Handler Dell Hart tells NBC,
“Just the fact that he carries on the legacy of a fallen hero I think is very cool. He was very dedicated to public service.”
Dell decided to join the TSA after 9/11. He was on a flight to New York that day, and had to land in Pennsylvania.
“I reflect a lot on what happened, and why I’m where I’m at. I feel like I’m doing something to make a difference and prevent something like 9/11 from happening again.”
Recently, Hhoward and Dell had the opportunity to visit George Howard’s son, who is now a firefighter in New York. Chris Howard was happy to meet the two, and was able to share more about who his dad was.
And the unusual spelling of Hhoward’s name? It’s spelled that way so the people he meets know that he was named for a hero.
.@TSA dogs whose names start with two of the same letter are named after victims of 9/11. This is Hhoward. He works at Indianapolis International Airport and is obviously very eager to get to work. @INDairport pic.twitter.com/NCiw8eYLmY
— TSAmedia_LisaF (@TSAmedia_LisaF) December 13, 2017
Chris considers it an honor that Hhoward is working, and helping keep his father’s memory alive.
“My dad was a big animal lover. So the fact that there’s a dog named after him I think makes my dad pretty happy wherever he is.”
Learn more about Officer George Howard at ODMP.org.
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