Tuesday, September 11, 2012

FDNY Ski House

Hunter Mountain is only two hours north of New York City, and has long been a popular destination for firefighters from the FDNY to get out on the slopes.  Exactly one year ago (on the 10th anniversary of the attack of 9-11) Hunter Mountain dedicated a memorial to the victims of 9-11, three hundred and forty three (343) of whom were FDNY.  The memorial in Hunter is made of steel that was pulled from the World Trade Center. As solemn as that memorial is, there is also healing at Hunter.  That healing can be seen in a very unusual annual event at Hunter Mountain:  the Firefighters Ski Race.....in which teams of five firefighters dressed in their full gear attempt to race down a slalom course while carrying a 50-ft fire-hose!  Firefighters from all over the East coast compete in the event.  A really unusual event...and fun to watch.  But more than just fun;  for a New Yorker, an American, indeed for a human being, it's inspiring to watch because on the first day of the race it's FDNY only.  In 2002, (the first race after the tragic events of 9-11) race director and retired FDNY Capt. Joe Jove remarked as he watched the FDNY firefighters silently gaze out at the view, "hopefully this will be the start of the recovery" (according to Skinet).

On the sad anniversary of 9-11, the ski house of the day is one that exists in the hearts and minds of the New York City firefighters....it is the old ski house on Main Street that was occupied by FDNY firefighters while skiing at Hunter Mountain back before the race was part of a recovery...when the firefighters ski race was just a fun idea.  According to Skinet, it was back in 1973 that the Firefighters Ski Race got its start as "a friendly grudge match between two FDNY ski houses."

To honor the memory of those firefighters and all others who were lost on this date 11 years ago, the Ski House of the Day is the 1973-era FDNY ski house on Main Street.

May we never forget, and may the recovery continue.

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