Mychal Judge: “God please end this…”

Rescue workers carry mortally injured New York City Fire Department chaplain Mychal Judge from the wreckage after he was killed by falling debris while administering last rites to another victim. A Roman Catholic priest, a recovering alcoholic, a gay man, and -- as an FDNY chaplain a spiritual adviser and trusted friend to countless firefighters through the years -- "Father Mike" was the first recorded victim of the September 11 attacks. Photographer Shannon Stapleton's picture, which burns with immediacy and yet somehow feels composed, almost painterly, captures much of the day's intense incongruities in one sombre frame: the intimacy of witnessing a single death in the midst of a monumental catastrophe; brilliant sunlight shining on the chaplain's lifeless hands; devastated first responders shrugging off exhaustion, racing to the aid of helpless victims. Here is the best, and the very worst, of that day. <br><br>(Photo: SHANNON STAPLETON/Reuters /Landov )

 <br><br>For the full photo collection, go to <a target="_blank" href=""></a>

From Wikipedia:

On September 11, 2001, upon learning that the World Trade Center had been hit by the first of two jetliners, Judge rushed to the site. He was met by Rudolph Giuliani, the Mayor of New York City, who asked him to pray for the city and its victims. Judge prayed over some bodies lying on the streets, then entered the lobby of the World Trade Center North Tower, where an emergency command post had been organized. There he continued offering aid and prayers for the rescuers, the injured, and the dead.

When the South Tower collapsed at 9:59 am, debris went flying through the North Tower lobby, killing many inside, including Judge. At the moment he was struck in the head and killed, Judge was repeatedly praying aloud, “Jesus, please end this right now! God, please end this!”, according to Judge’s biographer and New York Daily News columnist Michael Daly.[16][17] – snip –

Shortly after his death, an NYPD lieutenant found Judge’s body. He and two firemen, a FDNY emergency medical technician detailed to the Office of Emergency Management (OEM), and one civilian bystander then carried Judge’s body out of the North Tower. 

-snip –

 Judge’s body was laid before the altar of St. Peter’s Catholic Church before being taken to the medical examiner.[20]

I didn’t hear this story until today, because from 9/12 on, I could not watch television coverage of the attacks.  I would forgive you if you didn’t read this post.   Judge would ask for forgiveness for the men who did this.  Just one more reason why he was a better man than I am.


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6 Responses to Mychal Judge: “God please end this…”

  1. Jeanette Victoria says:

    If he were still alive he would prolly be sued for offending the sensibilities of those who were not Chrstians

    Liked by 3 people

  2. A Reader #1 says:

    I went to school with one of his kids:
    “As the director of security for the financial services firm Morgan Stanley at the World Trade Center, Rescorla anticipated attacks on the towers and implemented evacuation procedures credited with saving many lives.[3] He died during the attacks of September 11, 2001, while leading evacuees from the South Tower.
    Rescorla had boosted morale among his men in Vietnam by singing Cornish songs from his youth, and now he did the same in the stairwell, singing songs like one based on the Welsh song “Men of Harlech”….

    Between songs, Rescorla called his wife, telling her, “Stop crying. I have to get these people out safely. If something should happen to me, I want you to know I’ve never been happier. You made my life.” After successfully evacuating most of Morgan Stanley’s 2,687 employees, he went back into the building. When one of his colleagues told him he too had to evacuate the World Trade Center, Rescorla replied, “As soon as I make sure everyone else is out”. He was last seen on the 10th floor, heading upward, shortly before the South Tower collapsed at 9:59 A.M. His remains were never found. Rescorla was declared dead three weeks after the attacks.”

    The thing that got me at the time, that still gets to me and always will, is that these men WENT BACK IN to save others. They went back.

    Liked by 5 people

    • I’ve seen a few excellent documentaries about him. As a nation, and as a species, we are blessed to have individuals like this.

      Liked by 3 people

    • Cube says:

      After the towers fell and before we knew there would be only a handful of survivors, people were lined up in New York to give blood. A radio guy was interviewing someone standing in line and asked if he knew anyone involved. He said “No”. The radio guy asked, “Then why are you here?” The reply still chokes me up: “Where else would we be?” That answer contains the very best of who we are as Americans.

      Liked by 3 people

      • I watched the whole thing, more or less real time, during breaks in a “Management of Aggressive Behaviour” class. It was a two day thing; the second day was Thursday the 13th. The instructor said that the company had been trying to sell the training to the airlines for several years, but they had all turned it down because the only reasonable response to a hijacking was to give the guy(s) what he(they) wanted. Since we spent over an hour just on dealing with someone with a blade, I suspect that this and similar training is now available to airline personnel.

        I worked at a hospital a good two hours from NY, obviously less by helo. Even we were put on standby initially; given the maximum number of potential injured, I think most hospitals within that radius were.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. gmking222 says:

    I vaguely recall that Mychal Judge was a Catholic priest and, as an FDNY volunteer firefighter, served as their chaplain.

    Liked by 1 person

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