We have been told that it is usually something small—a new movie or a high, cloudless morning sky—that brings back the events of September 11, 2001, to the spouses and family members who lost loved ones that day. The fifth anniversary of the tragic events of September 11, 2001 has passed. However, while some families in New York have returned to a sense of normalcy, for other families every day is a day of remembrance. Their lives, and the lives of all the families that the New York Police & Fire Widows’ & Children’s Benefit Fund supports, have been changed forever.
As many of you are well aware, the Benefit Fund was formed in 1985 by Daniel J. “Rusty” Staub to provide assistance to the families of New York City police officers and firefighters who lost their lives in the line of duty and following September 11, 2001, the Benefit Fund included the families of Port Authority officers and EMS.
The Benefit Fund, with the help of generous citizens like yourself, responded to the grave responsibility placed upon us. Almost all of the funds raised by the Benefit Fund in the months following September 11, 2001 either already have been distributed to our approximately 700 widows and widowers or have been designated for distribution, barring unforeseen future demands, to each of the widows and widowers for each year through 2009 in an amount of approximately $13,000 per year. Again, none of this would have been possible without your support. However, the needs of these widows and widowers will not disappear after 2009. Thus, now more than ever we need your continuing support in order to ensure that future annual payments to our widows and widowers will not sharply decline.
We often receive letters from widows who lost their spouses many years ago and who are now entering their senior years. Their letters make plain to us how very important the assistance we provide to them is. For these widows, our support has tangible results: a new roof for a home, assistance with purchasing medicine, helping a grandchild with special needs. Our dream has always been—and remains today—to continue making meaningful distributions to all of our widows for the duration of their lives. In order to do so, we must rely on the continued support of our donors. When you consider your future charitable endeavors, we hope that you will continue to support the New York Police & Fire Widows’ & Children’s Benefit Fund with an annual contribution. Donations should be mailed to:
New York Police & Fire Widows’ & Children’s Benefit Fund
General Post Office
P.O. Box 26837
New York, NY 10087-6837
We greatly appreciate your continuing support.
Stephen J. Dannhauser
Daniel J. “Rusty” Staub