After Sept. 11, Kevin Shea did not even know the twin towers had come down. The firefighter was buried in the rubble with a broken neck and suffered from amnesia.
Shea was the only responding member of his company to survive; 11 members died.
"I need to heal. I lost all my brothers -- not my family, my fire brothers. I'm left to stand there alive," he said.
Retired firefighter Ray Bressingham raced to the scene on his boat to help. He took pictures of the destruction.
"This didn't compare to anything I've ever seen before. The devastation, the twisted steel, 220 floors scattered over 16 acres, through buildings. We were overwhelmed," he said.
Despite the tragedy, the men said that they have learned to laugh again and have found the most joy in reaching out to others.
Their visit to Raleigh was to honor a local nonprofit organization called Feed the Firefighters, which provides food to firefighters on the scene.
They also thanked area firefighters for their support.
North Carolina Fallen Firefighters Association
has raised thousands of dollars to help victims' families.
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