ZERO PLUS 1095 DAYS, (24 HOURS TO GROUND
ZERO PLUS THREE YEARS)--New York, NY,
Thursday, September 9, 2004--There
are thousands of Silent Victims of Nine Eleven wandering about
the earth silently screaming over their survival of that day's
holocaust. I know, I am one of them.
are thousands of victims of Nine Eleven silently screaming
the outside we, the Silent Survivors, bear no obvious scars
of the worst attack on American soil since the War of 1812.
We don't brandish a Red Badge of Courage soaked with the blood
of the thousands who died that day tied around our foreheads.
We don't have television cameras thrust into our faces broadcasting
to the world the daily and nightly anguish we live with as
we witnessed from the ground the horror of our comrades leaping
from the Twin Towers, or the fear we suffered when the earth
heaved beneath our feet and the Beast of Terror seemed to
rise from the bowels New York's subways to threaten our lives
and drench us in a cloud of death that most of us were sure
would snuff out our lives.
live within the secret of our silent survivorship. We are
the fodder, the backdrop, the landscape to the 2,605
victims who have been recorded dead when American Airlines
Flight 11 hit the North Tower and United Fight 175 slammed
into the South Tower with 127 passengers, 20 crewmembers and
ten Terrorists aboard.
cameras do not follow us around, delve into the hollowness
of our lives, or record the startling moments when we bolt
upright in our beds in the middle of the night screaming,
or, capture that frozen, fearful look when we duck as a low-fly
jet passes overhead, or, freeze-frame the furrows on our faces
as our guts twist into Gordian Knots when we watch Rescue
Me and remember the vacuous stare of the dead spearing glassy,
lifeless eyes at us and whispering through their defunct souls:
"Why Me...Why Not YOU???"
live on the banks of the River Styx.
Survivors of Nine Eleven line the banks of the River
Greek mythology, Styx
was a river that formed the boundary between earth and
the underworld. When you died, a coin was placed under your
tongue as tribute to the ferryman Charon
who would oar you from one side to the other. If you didn't
have a coin, you were destined to wander for 100 years on
the edge of life and death.
many ways, we, the Silent Survivors of Nine Eleven stand between
the living and the dead of that day. We line the banks of
the River Styx, shadows of an experience that the world wants
to put aside and move on with life after death.
the Silent Screamers, that isn't as easy as it sounds.
cannot bury our memories. We cannot bury our helplessness
that day when we watched so many die before our eyes, and
when we, faced with our own death, prayed to live and did.
was a few blocks away from the burning buildings, watching
the bodies leaping from the towering inferno. I was a solemn
witness and part of me died with each person who dove to his
or her death.
is little accounting for the thousands upon thousands
who witnessed the death and destruction of Nine Eleven
horror unfold before your powerless eyes is something you
do not wish upon anyone, for it opens the soul to a vulnerability
that cannot be healed. We were like observers at Auschwitz
or Buchenwald, standing at the barbed wire fence watching
the rows of humans walking into the furnaces, our ears tuned
to their Silent Screams as our own Silent Screams ricocheted
within our marrow, escaping only with a dull, lifeless thud
as the bodies hit the ground.
to some statistics, 40,000 people escaped the Twin Towers
that bright September morning. But, there is little accounting
for the thousands upon thousands who were nearby witnessing
the death and destruction.
were the historical recorders of death's swiftness. It took
less than ten seconds for the buildings to collapse from nearly
a quarter mile in the sky. When the first tower fell, it was
as though the bowels of Hell had erupted.
stampeded, pushing, shoving. Their eyes were glazed, as the
dead, frozen in fear that Terrorism seeks to inject into all
its victims. Others couldn't move. The women next to me whimpered:
"We're all going to die." I grabbed them and shoved
them against a wall to protect them from the debris and said
as calmly as I could, "If we're all going to die, then
think of something beautiful. Let your last thought be of
mine was about death. I prayed for a quick death. I was fearful
the Terrorists had released some nerve gas and we would writhe
in pain and anguish. I asked for a quick death, and then flashed
before my eyes my family and loved ones, wanting that last
thought to be embossed forever as I wandered the banks of
the River Styx, for I was sure I didn't have a coin under
did the memories of that day.
made a vow to never forget the legacy of Nine Eleven, or the
Sentinels of Vigilance who gave their lives by default to
remind us that Vigilance is the only way we can ward off the
Silent Screams of Terrorism.
three years I have posted daily stories about Vigilance on
www.vigilancevoice.com--if for no other reason than to quell
the Silent Screams that rage within me.
cannot forget the death, destruction or the evil that looms
over our nation and other nations as a result of Terrorism's
assault on our nation and the world. When I think I am walking
the banks of the River Styx in futility, Terrorism raises
its vile and corrupt head and lashes out with its venomous
fangs and claws to remind me that my journey between the life
of Vigilance and the death of Terrorism is not in vain.
out Silent Screams for those school children and their
parents who suffered in Russia last week
last week the Beast of Terror attacked hundreds of school
children in Russia and wantonly killed them. I let out Silent
Screams for those children and their parents, as I do daily
for all victims of all forms of Terrorism.
I continue to suffer the pain of being a Silent Screamer.
February of this year after being prodded by my wife and friends
who knew me well, I filed with my disability insurance company,
MONY, a claim for Ground Zero Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
was reluctant to do so, for I refused to accept that my financial
life had been crippled by Nine Eleven or that I was a "victim."
It seemed to me that the true victims had died that day, and
to believe I was a "victim" seemed a violation of
the facts told me differently. I had become obsessed with
my website, spending all my time and energy trying to bring
to life the dead, to avenge the horror of Terrorism, to ring
the bells of Vigilance and get the world to take my Pledge
of Vigilance to protect the children and the Children's Children's
Children from future harm.
more than two million words on the website, each story focused
on forming a Nation of Vigilance to drive away all forms of
Terrorism from the Emotional to the Physical. I was bankrupt.
My life had been consumed by my mission as the Avenging Angel
client of MONY, a major insurance company I had purchased
my disability policies with more than thirty years early,
I filed a claim for Ground Zero Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
documented all my symptoms, and presented to the company my
website and all its information. I had no funds to see a private
doctor to affirm my PTSD, and pleaded with MONY to provide
me such. They denied me access.
went to the VA. I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress
Disorder with an onset date of September 11, 2001.
denied my claim for GZ-PTSD and AXA/MONY gave me the
that MONY might try to deny my claim because the VA relates
PTSD to the combat experience of vets, I pleaded for additional
private review by MONY and was again denied. I was told by
MONY that they would "take care of me."
three months later MONY denied my claim. They said I did not
have Ground Zero Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and if I
did have PTSD, it was "war related."
argued forcefully that I had never had any symptoms of PTSD
before September 11, 2001, and never been treated for it.
MONY twisted and convoluted my contract to deny me the rights
I had paid on for three decades.
said that a previous claim I had prior to Nine Eleven for
depression had not changed, and essentially called me a liar
and a fraud for filing for Ground Zero Post Traumatic Stress
they kicked the dog. They offered me a meager settlement in
return for surrendering my policies, whose value to my wife
were I to exercise all the potential benefits allowed, amounted
to at least $550,000.
told me they would pay me $34,000 if I surrendered my policies,
signed a release, and never bothered them again.
screamed foul. I went into a rage, not just over the money,
but because they were telling me I was a fraud, a liar, a
cheat by trying to claim Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. They
refused to accept the symptoms or diagnosis I was given for
PTSD. They denied that I had been afflicted with PTSD as a
result of Nine Eleven, and that I had no right to claim a
concurrent New Benefit as of September 11, 2001.
Terrorists had a box cutter to my financial jugular
wife, a cancer victim suffering from three different types
of cancer, begged me to take the offer. We were thousands
of dollars behind in rent being faced with eviction. I felt
like the people on the planes that flew into the Twin Towers.
The MONY Terrorists had a box cutter to my financial jugular.
told me if I didn't take their offer I risked getting nothing,
and, said that I had no right to a claim anyway, and they
were simply doing me a favor by offering me the $34,000 because
I was so "upset."
I realize, comes in many forms. I have written about it many
times, including Corporate Terrorism, but now I was the victim.
I was on my knees. My wife was begging me to accept. I was
screaming into the phone about the unfairness, the unjustness
of MONY's icy, cold Terroristic decision after having led
me down the rosy path for months on the assumption that my
claim was valid.
a gun to my head, I accepted, signed the release, and took
the money. I signed with the blood of the victims of Nine
Eleven, for what infuriated me the most about the ugliness
of MONY's decision was the insult they slapped to the memories
of the people I had served for three years--the Victims of
denying my claim, they denied that my work on the legacy of
the Sentinels of Vigilance meant anything. They virtually
ignored the fact that I lived daily in the belly of the Beast
I repeatedly requested to be interviewed by MONY's doctors
to affirm my Ground Zero PTSD, I was denied those requests.
The countless documents I sent to the top executives of MONY,
Mr. Michael Roth, Mr. Sam Foti, and Mr. Richard Daddario,
were shuffled off to MONY's third-party claims company, a
profit-based company that makes money by denying claims and
purchasing back policies at discounts, among other things.
I found that MONY had been purchased by AXA Financial, a company
that manages nearly $1 trillion in financial assets.
pleaded with AXA Financial for justice, but was given the
cold corporate shoulder. AXA Financial had assumed all the
liabilities of MONY, ingested its bile as well as its assets,
and I was part of that bile.
has refused to respond to any of my requests for fair and
just settlement of my dispute. It has ignored my repeated
requests I have made to its President, Mr. Kip Condron, and
to all the executive officers of AXA Financial.
I think of
the horror of Nine Eleven and of being a Silent Screamer
the majority of survivors of Nine Eleven, AXA Financial wants
to smother my Silent Screams.
who suffered so much that day, and live with that suffering,
have been cast to the netherland. We are the shadows of Nine
I sit here and think about the horror of Nine Eleven, I think
about the horror of being a Silent Screamer.
have been called a liar, cheat, a scum bag, a violator of
my contracts with MONY and AXA by their denial of my claim.
They have refused to accept any and all of my claims I am
a "victim" of Ground Zero Post Traumatic Stress
like saying I wasn't there. It's like telling me I am nothing
more than some beggar standing at their door trying to get
something I don't deserve.
find it sad that the moral and ethical posture of corporations
sink so low as to deny a client the right to validate his
claim. MONY refused to allow me to seek additional medical
authentication of my PTSD, an example of its intent to simply
deny my claim.
MONY exercised its moral and ethical duties, it would have
offered me the opportunity to defend my symptoms and condition
rather than summarily denying my claim on the grounds that
my symptoms were "war related" or that they were
"unchanged" from prior depression.
simply expunged any possibility that I might have Ground Zero
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and by erasing that possibility,
felt justified in crushing my contract and forcing me to accept
a pittance settlement under duress.
of Nine Eleven have many symptoms from that day clinging to
them like leeches. One of those for me is Corporate Terrorism.
and its parent AXA Financial have chosen to kick, bully, maim
and exaggerate the wounds I suffered from Nine Eleven.
will scream again and again for the Vigilance to stand
up to Terrorism
have "written me off," and a vice president of MONY
recently sent me a letter saying, "this case is closed,"
which is a simple way of saying F_ _ _ Y_ _ And The Nine Eleven
Horse You Rode In On."
as the last 24 hours before the third anniversary comes to
bear, I will scream. I will scream silently again and again,
and one day, I hope, my screams will be heard.
will scream for Vigilance, as I have been. I will scream that
we must stand up to Terrorism, whether it be the violence
in Russia or the Corporate Terrorism of a MONY and AXA Financial
who wantonly attempt to destroy the lives of people who challenge