Skip to comments.Morgan Stanley workers recall heroic colleague
Posted on 09/15/2001 9:18:19 AM PDT by Lexington Green
EX-PLATOON LEADER REPEATED SELFLESS FEAT OF 1993, HELPING LEAD PEOPLE OUT TUESDAY
NEW YORK -- As security head at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter, Rick Rescorla knew the drill: He had ferried employees out when terrorism first struck the World Trade Center in 1993, and he was there with his bullhorn Tuesday, trying once again to get his people out.
Nearly all of them did. Rescorla did not.
He is one of the 15 Morgan Stanley employees still missing. And those who know him say that Rescorla, who was in his 44th-floor office in the trade tower struck by the second plane, may well be the reason the vast majority of the 3,700 Morgan Stanley employees got out alive.
``Rick was down toward the base trying to make sure people got down and out,'' said Bob Sloss, a managing director at Morgan Stanley who last saw Rescorla around the 10th floor in the stairwell. ``He was definitely there well after it had been established that the building was in trouble.''
Typical Rescorla, said those who know him from his days as a lieutenant and platoon leader in Vietnam, where he would sing to his men at tense times and instill in them the courage to get back up for one more round of battle.
``He couldn't be any other way,'' recalled Sam Fantino, who was Rescorla's radio operator in Vietnam and has been flooded with e-mails from their military colleagues bemoaning the possible loss of Rescorla, 62, in the World Trade Center tragedy.
Morgan Stanley employees remembered stories of how Rescorla had bounded into action during the 1993 bombing at the trade towers. Fantino said Rescorla took a rather unconventional approach to regaining control of the panic-stricken crowd as he tried to clear the building that day.
``To get their attention, he dropped his pants,'' recalled Fantino. Rescorla, with his commanding demeanor and voice, was just the type you want in charge, whether it was on Tuesday or during the 1993 attack, he said.
``He was literally the last person to leave that building,'' another Army friend, Joe Galloway, recalled of the 1993 bombing. ``He stayed until he had gotten everyone out, and that is the nature of the man.''
``Anything great you can say about Rick Rescorla, please do,'' said Lt. Gen. Hal Moore, who served with Rescorla in Vietnam and later co-wrote a book, ``We Were Soldiers Once . . . and Young,'' about their experiences fighting in the Ia Drang valley of South Vietnam in 1965.
Indeed, Rescorla's photo is on the cover of the book, written with Galloway and now being made into a movie starring Mel Gibson.
``Rick Rescorla was the best infantry lieutenant I've seen,'' Moore said Friday night. ``He was absolutely superb. Calm, cool, fearless, very professional, inspiring, and all of this without any intention to be a showoff.''
``He is a true American hero,'' Moore said, ``and if this is actually going to be called a war . . . then Rick deserves a Medal of Honor.''
Born in Hayle, Cornwall, in England in 1939, Rescorla served as a mercenary for the British army in Zimbabwe, and then became a police officer in Rhodesia before coming to the United States in the 1960s and joining the Army.
He was a platoon leader in Vietnam, where Fantino and others said Rescorla was an inspiration to his troops. He could make them laugh with a joke or a song, and somehow inspire them to get up and ``kick some butt'' in battle.
He put himself through college at the University of Oklahoma on the G.I. Bill, and went on to get a master's degree and a law degree. Rescorla, who retired as a colonel in the Army Reserve in 1989, had worked in security management for many years, including the past 18 working for Morgan Stanley, where he started out as director of security and moved up to first vice president for security.
Spread between the 43rd and 66th floors, Morgan Stanley offices were buzzing with activity Tuesday when the first plane struck the neighboring tower at 8:45 a.m. A plane hit the second building at 9:03 a.m.
Rescorla was in his office when the disaster hit.
His wife, Susan, said she called when she heard the news and was told, ``Don't worry about anything, Rick is getting the people out.''
Rescorla called about 10 minutes later. His next words struck terror in her heart: ``If anything happens to me,'' he just wanted her to know that ``you made my life.''
She said she's heard that her husband was going from floor to floor, making sure people were out, and had been spotted around the 72nd floor at one point. Since then, she's been praying constantly for some shred of evidence that he might somehow be alive, caught in the rubble.
Sloss, who was in his office on the 66th floor when the plane hit, said he remembers seeing Rescorla on the 10th floor, telling people to get off their cell phones and proceed carefully but quickly.
``Rick was down there absolutely perspiring,'' Sloss said. ``He had his bullhorn. He was encouraging people to calm down.''
``If anybody could get (people) out or do anything,'' his wife said, ``it was my Rick.''
What incredible courage.
What an incredible conclusion this movie will have. I'm glad Mel is doing it rather that one of the usual Hollwood Tripe's.
...our U.S. 7th Cavalry's IA DRANG-1965 website...
.. www.lzxray.com ...
.. www.WeWereSoldiersFILM.com .. (Including Forum)
...and my Bookmarked Freerepublic Thread titled...
'WE WERE SOLDIERS ONCE...& YOUNG...4 FREEDOM'
GARRY OWEN (U.S. 7th Cavalry Salute)
RESCORLA DESERVES THE MEDAL OF HONOR...Let's see he gets it.
...It was the CLINTONS that stopped the CIA in 1995 from recruiting and hiring the very Spies America needed to expose what Terrorists had in mind for it.
DON'T LET THE CLINTONS GET AWAY WITH IT.
..'The JUDICIAL WATCH Report'.. on..
...It's now Personal...!!!!!
...See my Bookmarked Freerepublic Thread titled...
'CIA Officials Reveal What Went Wrong = CLINTON to Blame'
Go with God, Rick
...See my Bookmarked Freerepublic.com Thread titled...
..........'Death in the IA DRANG Valley'..........
...for the Hell of IA DRANG-1965's Landing Zone Albany that saw American Hero Lt. RICK RESCORLA even then saving lives...
...just like he did at the World Trade Center Twin Towers in 1993 -&- 2001.
Signed:..A Witness-Vet/Battle of IA DRANG-1965 www.lzxray.com
The are the kind of people that make America great.
God bless the Rick Rescorla's of this world.
...The ..-Revenge of American Hero RICK RESCORLA-..
...is discussed on this weekend's Nationally Broadcast ..'JUDICIAL WATCH Report'.. Talk Radio Show...
...which airs on a tape-delayed broadcast basis tonight in Southern California @ 10:00pm PDT on KRLA 870 AM - www.Newstalk870.com ..
...Please see.. www.JudicialWatch.org .. 4-More...
GARRY OWEN (U.S. 7th Air Cavalry Salute)
..'The Movie'.. Thread titled...
'September 11, 2001 - Another Day That Will Live In Infamy'
His sacrifice will not be in vain. We will unite and face the enemy we pretended did not exist.
It was also the Clintons that stopped our missle defense back in 1993. They have sold out this country. Furthermore, they have been aiding and abetting terrorists groups to destroy this country.
God bless the heroes!
WHERE DID HE GET THE BULLHORN ??
Scout Motto: "Be Prepared." (And he was!)
I heard you on the show this evening. Wow! Glad you got through. A salute to a true Amercian patriot and veteran! I was up the night before last flying the American flag and burning my candle with others up the street for four hours. I didn't get get home until 12:15 a.m. this morning.
By the way, who is Gary Owen? I hear you mention it often on Bob Dornan's show.
May it be ever vigilante and noble in its deeds.
..-GARRY OWEN- was the 15th Century Scottish Guerilla Hero of the U.S. 7th Cavalry Regiment's Founder and Commanding Officer Gen. ARMSTRONG CUSTER of -Battle of the Little Big Horn- Fame.
...We ...of the U.S. 7th Cavalry Regiment at the 2nd -Battle of the Little Big Horn- in the -Valley of Death- that was IA DRANG-1965...
...who are thus known as the -GARRY OWEN- Regiment...
...always say .."GARRY OWEN".. to the Ones we are saluting ..while in the U.S. Military or after.
...4-More please see my Bookmarked Freerepublic.com Thread titled...
'WE WERE SOLDIERS ONCE...& YOUNG..4 FREEDOM'
...as well as our U.S. 7th Cavalry Regiment's IA DRANG-1965 website.. www.lzxray.com
.."GARRY OWEN".. goldilucky.
I'm going to buy the book this week.
Thanks for the ping.
I hope to see you next Saturday at the Drawbridge.
I hate this story...no, I love it.
God bless America!
This really puts a face on just one of the many real-life, flesh-and-bone heroes who perished in the satanic attack on our great country.
They must be avenged.