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NYC's Bronze Medallion presented to advocates of 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund

Posted: 5:45 PM, Dec 16, 2019
Updated: 2019-12-16 20:11:55-05
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NEW YORK — New York City's highest civic honor was handed out Monday to the tireless advocates of the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund.

"This is a somber ceremony in so many ways, even though we celebrate such good people and we celebrate a victory," Mayor Bill de Blasio said at the Beacon Theater on the Upper West Side.

The Bronze Medallion was awarded to the men and women who fought to make the Victim Compensation Fund permanent. It took years of work and many trips to Capitol Hill.

"This moment is for James Zadroga, Ray Pfiefer, Luis Alvarez and all others who have gotten sick, or passed away because of their time spent at Ground Zero, the Pentagon or Shanksville," Representative Carolyn Maloney said.

Phil Alvarez accepted the award on behalf of his brother Detective Luis Alvarez, whose moving testimony before Congress alongside Jon Stewart, helped persuade lawmakers to pass the bill.

"I had a feeling of gratitude to the City of New York for honoring my brother but more importantly, honoring so many people that worked so hard," he said.

Another recipient was John Feal of the Feal Good Foundation. He was a demolition supervisor at Ground Zero and has since worked as an advocate and activist. "I am going to go home and chop this up. I am going to make sure every one of my team members get a piece of it," Feal said.

While only a select few received the Bronze Medallion Monday, the mayor said many more deserve the honor.

"They may not have famous names but we are honoring each and every one of them," he said.

The honorees are:

Luis Alvarez (posthumous): Former New York City Police Detective and 9/11 first-responder
Chief Paul Brown: New York City Department of Sanitation Head of Personnel Management and 9/11first-responder
Ben Chevat: Executive Director of 9/11 Health Watch
John Feal: Founder of the FealGood Foundation and advocate for 9/11 first-responders
Kimberly Flynn: Director of 9/11 Environmental Action and 9/11 children’s advocate
Lila Nordstrom: 9/11 children’s advocate and founder of StuyHealth
Richard Palmer: Former New York City Department of Correction Warden and 9/11 first-responder
Ray Pfiefer (posthumous): Former New York City Firefighter and 9/11 first-responder
Deborah Reeve (posthumous): Former New York City Fire Department Emergency Medical Technician and 9/11 first-responder
Jon Stewart: Advocate for 9/11 first-responders
James Zadroga (posthumous): Former New York City Police Officer and 9/11 first-responder
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey:Accepting on behalf of the Port Authority Police Department – Edward Cetnar, Superintendent of the Port Authority Police Department
Accepting on behalf of the Port Authority civilian employees – Alan Reiss, Director, World Trade Center Construction, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Municipal Labor Committee: Association of Labor Unions representing public sector employees in New York City. Accepting on behalf of the Municipal Labor Committee – Henry Garrido, Co-Chair of the Municipal Labor Committee and Executive Director of District Council 37, AFSCME
Municipal Labor Committee: Association of Labor Unions representing public sector employees in New York City. Accepting on behalf of the Municipal Labor Committee – Henry Garrido, Co-Chair of the Municipal Labor Committee and Executive Director of District Council 37, AFSCME
U.S. Representative Carolyn B. Maloney: U.S. Representative for New York’s 12th Congressional District
U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler: U.S. Representative for New York’s 10th Congressional District
U.S. Representative Jerrold Nadler: U.S. Representative for New York’s 10th Congressional District
Senator Chuck Schumer: U.S. Senator from New York
Senator Kirsten Gillibrand: U.S. Senator from New York