The Forest Hills community remembered the attacks of 9/11 and the loss of one of its own on that day.
A memorial event was held on Sept. 11 in front of the Forest Hills Volunteer Ambulance Corps on Metropolitan Avenue.
On that day 12 years ago, Richard Allen Pearlman, 18, was running an errand for Cooper and Cully to 1 Police Plaza when the attack of the World Trade Center occurred. Without hesitation, Richard went to help —It’s my job to help,” he said, according to the Boy Scouts, where Richard was once a member.
“That was a child, actually a child, who gave his life to save somebody else. That was his whole life. He died the way he lived,” his mother, Dorie Pearlman, said. “No child is perfect, unless he is an angel, but he had a very big heart. If anyone needed help, he was there to help them, day or night.”
“I was at the site this morning [9/11/13]” said Daniel Exler, who has been with the Forest Hills VAC for nearly 20 years. “I saw when I go there: I saw the buildings down, the carnage and everything of 9/11. We saw a lot of body parts and everything else.
“What we were trying to do was to find any survivors and there weren’t any,” Exler added.
“9/11 was Pearl Harbor. It was an attack on the United States. It didn’t attack the military, it attacked civilians. It killed people. It murdered people. It murdered New Yorkers. It murdered people on the flights and it was a deliberate act of terrorism, hatred, and evil,” said Barbara Stuchinski, president of the Forest Hills Civic and Community Association.
“Speaking to people outside the area, it was sad but it wasn’t real to them,” Stuchinski said. “It’s our city, it’s our hole in the ground, there lies our neighbors, our friends, children of ours, it affects us more but if you’re in California, what do you know?’
“This is one day I remember, not only on 9/11, but every day,” said City Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills). “Every day something reminds me about 9/11.”
She said to the Pearlmans: “Unfortunately, you have to carry this every single day.”
In an interview with the Chronicle, Koslowitz said that she believes children should be taught about 9/11 in school.
Boy Scout Troop 349 from Our Lady Queen of Martyrs in Forest Hills and Boy Scout Troop 106 from Trinity Lutheran Church in Middle Village took down the country’s flags for the night in front of the ambulance corps. Pearlman had been a member of the Middle Village troop.
Rabbi Y. Ginzburg, who grew up in Forest Hills, gave the invocation for “the righteous manner they lived their lives,” and that was followed by a moment of silence.
A memorial garden in memory of Pearlman is being planned by the Forest Hills Volunteer Ambulance Corps For inquiries or to donate, contact email@example.com.