For these men, the fire service is their heart, their blood, and their brotherhood.

On the morning of September 11, 2001, bound by that brotherhood, they responded to the alarm at the World Trade Center. They fought that day to save civilians, each other, and themselves, against an adversary they thought they knew, and with every step they took, came to realize they might not see another sunrise.

The sky bled. It rained in rivers of flesh and blood. The Brothers saw what they were up against, and slow-walked themselves silently into the towers. The thousands of fires they had fought over the years, from barge fires to jet plane fires, gave them all the experience they needed to get into those buildings, but nothing to deal with what they found. As the morning stretched on and the minutes tolled, the veterans sensed something was not right.

Things did not fit into the normal course of events. The remoteness of the conflagration, so high up, made any thought of marshalling their extensive resources against the blaze a fleeting possibility. And with every passing second, they knew from years of fighting the Beast that, without their interdiction, it would grow stronger and more defiant, possibly unbeatable.

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All profits from the book will go to the 9 11 Tribute Museum and the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation.

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