Air National Guard Member Worked in North Tower
Lieutenant Colonel Christopher Hardej of the 106th Rescue Wing, a search and rescue team in the Air National Guard, was in the North Tower on the morning of September 11th. At the time he was working as a transportation analyst for the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council. He remembers a sudden whoosh before the building went dark, hearing someone's voice from the stairwell calling to escape and being inside when the tower collapsed. After the collapse, Hardej said, "I remember thinking this is what it feels like to die." He was the last person from his office to escape the tower alive. Two days after the attack, Hardej returned to the 106th Rescue Wing, being deployed to Kuwait shortly after. The entire unit received equipment upgrades and would see combat action in Iraq.
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