SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - For 14 years, they have been guided by one simple, noble principal: Let us do good.And that is exactly what the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation has done once again.
Tunnel to Towers on Wednesday presented checks to the families of two New York City police officers who were shot and killed in their patrol car last month, paying off the mortgages of officers Rafael Ramos and Wenjian Liu in full and creating a fund to maintain the homes as necessary in the future, a remarkable but no longer surprising gesture by the organization to aid families facing tragedy.
"That's what they do,'' said Jane Grismer, race director of savannah's Tunnel to Towers run. "And it's an amazing, amazing foundation.''
Started in honor of their brother, Firefighter Stephen Siller, who was killed in the Sept. 11th attacks, the foundation and the Siller family has responded for many who have suffered in different ways.They have taken care of care of families of firefighters lost in and after 9/11. They have built custom smart homes for severely wounded military veterans and rebuilt homes destroyed by Hurricane Sandy.
And now this, now they have offered their personal, invaluable compassion where it was again needed.
"Nothing will ever bring my brother back,'' said Cindy Ramos, Officer Ramos' sister. "Just to know that my sister-in-law and the boys can sleep just a little bit better amidst this tragedy fills a little of that gap.''
Savannah was part of this campaign, as it has been with Tunnel to Towers races here the last three years, when Grismer helped launch the Operation True Blue Challenge to solicit online donations.
"I told 10 friends and they told to friends,'' said Grismer. "And that was the end of the night. So, I shut down my computer and the next day, I had almost 100 messages.''
That helped Tunnel to Towers raise $950,000 in a little more than a week. It helped them pay off two more homes for two more hurting families.And helped them do more of the good we have come to expect them to do and are proud to be part of.
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