Marana officer, FDNY veteran, reflects on 9/11 - Tucson News Now

Marana officer, FDNY veteran, reflects on 9/11

Dan Rowan (Source: Facebook/Troy Case) Dan Rowan (Source: Facebook/Troy Case)
MARANA, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

A Marana Police Department officer went to reminisce and reflect in New York on this 16th anniversary of the September 11th terror attacks.

Dan Rowan was once a FDNY firefighter.

He left the department on January 26, 2004, and became a Los Angeles Police Department officer in February 2004, before joining the Marana Police Department in September 2005.

On Monday, September 11, 2017, he returned to New York City to pay his respects and meet up with his fellow firefighters.

"It's almost like I've never left them," Rowan told Tucson News Now during a phone call. "That's what's so great about this department. You come in, the tears are flowing. There's no handshakes, it's kisses and hugs. That's what the brotherhood and sisterhood is all about. It's all about love for what we do. We put our lives on the line, every second of the day. When I put the badge on now and I get in my car, I'm a police officer, a fireman, and an EMS technician. It feels great, and I love it to death."

When asked how his visit in 2017 for the 9/11 anniversary differs from the first anniversary in 2002, Rowan said he sees the similarities with not much of a difference.

"To me, if you close your eyes it's like it's happening now. You see all the new guys coming in. They'll just sit there and watch you speak, with baited breath. They'll listen to all the stories you've got, and they want to learn too."

Those young firefighters are nervous about bringing up the tragedy of 9/11, Rowan said.

He's a 21-year veteran of Fire Department New York, and lost 10 of the 15 men on his team during the World Trade Center attacks. More than 2,500 people were killed in the World Trade Center attacks.

"They ask me about the job more than anything else. They really do not bring up 9/11. We don't really bring up 9/11," Rowan said. "They don't want to bring up our memories. They treat us with the utmost respect. They don't want to drag up that stuff, for fear that maybe we'll break down."

But now, Rowan said his current job is his therapy.

"I know how to handle it more. It's the reason I'm still working, to this day. They all looked at me and say, 'don't you have dreams, Dan? Don't you need counseling or anything?' Well, my job is my counseling. That's the reason why I'm talking to you. You're my counsel."

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