When the first plane hit the World Trade Center, Rich Miller was sound asleep. He was scheduled to attend a diver rescue training exercise at noon and was using the rare free morning to get some extra rest. When his wife woke him and told him what happened, he ran into the living room just in time to see the second plane smash into the South Tower. He threw on some clothes, kissed his wife and youngest daughter Nikki goodbye, jumped in his car and drove straight to the Bronx.
When he pulled into the police station parking lot, he saw John McCullough. The two men found a pickup truck loaded up with rescue equipment and quickly headed toward the Trade Center. As they raced down the West Side Highway, the North Tower began to fall.
“Before that happened, voices were coming through pretty clear over the division radios,” Rich recalled. “I could even recognize certain people. But when the North Tower fell, there was dead silence.”