The Westchester County 9/11 Related Illnesses Memorial Committee has selected leaders who will work to create the memorial, which will be located adjacent to “The Rising” at the Kensico Dam in Valhalla.
Matt McCauley and Peter Woods were elected by the committee, which includes family members of the victims, to serve as co-chairs. Patti Mallinson and Ellen Peifer will be working on the request for proposal for the project, review artists’ submissions for the memorial and work with the committee to select the final design. Anne Byrnes and Veronica Sullivan will work on fundraising for the project.
County Executive George Latimer said, “These newly selected leaders of the 9/11 Related Illnesses Committee are dedicated individuals who will undoubtedly memorialize those we have lost, and unfortunately will continue to lose, in a way that brings peace to their families, friends and neighbors.”
McCauley is a retired NYPD officer and paramedic, who worked as a first responder on 9/11 at Ground Zero. He is a lifelong resident of Westchester, who currently works as an attorney on 9/11 related issues and is active member of the Feel Good Foundation. Woods is retired NYPD sergeant, who worked as a first responder on 9/11 and at Ground Zero for 5 months. He resides in Hartsdale with his wife and two daughters, and is a Fire Commissioner in the Hartsdale Fire District.
McCauley said, “County Executive George Latimer has been a longtime supporter of first responders and the 9/11 community throughout his entire career. It is great to see that he understands the importance of having a memorial. In the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks our first responders were present at Ground Zero. Now as many of them are becoming sick and dying, it is important for our County to recognize the sacrifice. Thank you County Executive Latimer for showing that Westchester County will never forget.”
Woods said, “It’s a special honor to be co-chair of the 9/11 Related Illness Memorial. We owe a great deal to our first responders who have passed due to 9/11 illnesses. They gave the ultimate sacrifice. We must keep their memory alive.”
Mallinson is a resident of Harrison who lost her husband, Harrison Police Officer Walter Mallinson, in 2017. She currently works as a teacher in Harrison. Peifer is a resident of Hartsdale who lost her husband, NYPD Captain Ronald G. Peifer, in 2014. She is a retired teaching assistant and active volunteer at the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Elmsford. Byrnes is a resident of Pleasantville who lost her husband, FDNY Battalion Chief Kevin Byrnes, in 2004. She is an active volunteer at Holy Innocents Church, facilitating bereavement groups. Sullivan is a resident of Pleasantville who lost her father, James Patrick Sullivan – a Transit Authority employee who assisted in the recovery effort, in 2015. She currently works as a teacher in Rye.
If you know someone who has died due to 9/11 related illnesses or are interested in joining the committee contact Matt McCauley at MMcCauley@turkenheath.com or (914) 343-5251.