Hero of World Trade Center attack laid to rest in Israel

August 05, 2002

[Note by Tom Gross]

Here is a summary of the article attached below for those who don't have time to read it in full:

A computer programmer hailed as a hero for remaining with his quadriplegic friend rather than flee the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center was laid to rest in Israel on Monday. Abraham Zelmanowitz, 55, who worked on the 27th floor of the trade center's south tower, refused to leave behind his co-worker of many years, Ed Beyea, who couldn't descend the stairs in his wheelchair. Both died when the tower collapsed. A small bundle of Zelmanowitz's remains, which were identified late last week, were wrapped in a white cloth and buried next to his parents' graves in Jerusalem's old city.


“HE WAS A REAL HERO WHO GAVE UP HIS LIFE TO HELP HIS CO-WORKER”

Hero of World Trade Center attack laid to rest in Israel
The Associated Press
August 5, 2002

A computer programmer hailed as a hero for remaining with his quadriplegic friend rather than flee the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center was laid to rest in Israel on Monday.

In an act of final closure, the family of Abraham Zelmanowitz, 55, buried his remains next to his parents at the cemetery overlooking Jerusalem on the Mount of Olives, a revered resting place for many religious Jews.

"We are fulfilling his final wishes," said his sister-in-law Evelyn Zelmanowitz who was among a small group of family members who accompanied Zelmanowitz's remains from New York.

"He's able to have a final resting place, which is something that we all had hoped for, for his sake and ours too, some place we could come to mourn him and pay tribute to him," she said.

Zelmanowitz, whose remains were identified late last week, was hailed as a hero and praised by President George W. Bush for his act of compassion.

Zelmanowitz, who worked on the 27th floor of the trade center's south tower, refused to leave behind his co-worker of many years, Ed Beyea, who couldn't descend the stairs in his wheelchair. Both died when the tower collapsed.

"For us he's a big enough hope and inspiration for all mankind at a time of such unspeakable evil that someone could teach us how to behave, to feel compassion for one's fellow man," Evelyn Zelmanowitz said.

She said that she had spoken to her brother-in-law by phone soon after the plane plowed into the tower. Zelmanowitz had told Beyea's nurse to leave the building, since she had children to think of, she said.

"He was very calm. He said the air was clear and that they were waiting for a medical team to help evacuate his friend. That was the last we heard of him," she said.

In a moving ceremony in Hebrew and Yiddish held at a yeshiva religious school in Jerusalem, friends paid tribute to Zelmanowitz, a key member of the ultra-Orthodox community in Brooklyn and a regular visitor to Israel.

"He was the epitome of kindness and good deeds," saidfamily friend Herzel Schechter. "He was a real hero who gave up his life to help his co-worker."

Later a small procession moved onto the cemetery where a small bundle of Zelmanowitz's remains, wrapped up in a white cloth, were buried in a grave in front of his parents. The cemetery is considered an important place for its closeness to the site where the first and second temples of Judaism stood, in what is now the Old City.

"He appreciated the holiness of Israel and this cemetery," Schechter said.


All notes and summaries copyright © Tom Gross. All rights reserved.