Aunt Grace Hatton sent an email to relatives and friends this week. She informed us that her grandson Conor would be one of the family members reading the names of 9/11 victims at Ground Zero. Aunt Grace’s eldest son, my cousin, FDNY Rescue 1 Captain Terry Hatton, led his men into the burning north tower thirteen years ago today.
Conor is Terry Hatton’s nephew which also makes him my first cousin once removed. I once interviewed Conor about his favorite Broadway shows when he was only eleven years old.
I watched the live video stream on 911memorial.org. A firefighter rang a bell to begin a moment of silence. Then two family members approached a podium and began reading a portion of the list of victims’ names in alphabetical order. Each reader also mentioned the name of their late relative and said a few words. Conor’s turn came while they were reading last names that began with E. His remarks about Terry were heartfelt.
And my uncle, Terence S. Hatton, who was the captain of FDNY Rescue Company 1 and was nicknamed “Captain Manhattan.” Uncle Terry, your daughter Terri Elizabeth was born eight months after 9/11. She is beautiful, has your infectious laugh, heartwarming smile, and is tall like you. Your wife Beth has done an outstanding job raising Terri without you. There are no words to express our family’s profound sense of loss. We love honor and miss you terribly.