Greek Australian, Ann Margulis, had an uninterrupted view of the 9/11 terror attacks 20 years ago as she was doing a yoga class.
“It was unbelievable, traumatic to say the least,” Margulis told The Daily Telegraph about witnessing the two planes hit the Twin Towers on that fateful day in 2001, killing roughly 2876 people.
Margulis, along with her husband Les, were later evacuated from their apartment opposite the New York Stock Exchange in the shadow of Ground Zero because of the poisonous clouds that filled the air.
“The air was dreadful. We could smell the fires, they didn’t go out until February, many months later, and the air quality was terrible, it smelt like burning plastic,’ she told Daily Mail Australia.
But the Environmental Protection Agency said the air was safe to breathe despite it stinking as the site continued to burn.
Sixteen months later, Margulis suffered from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) so the couple returned to Sydney and then moved to the Blue Mountains.
She has still not been able to escape the cancers caused by the toxic fumes.
In 2005, she contracted thyroid cancer and then four years later, stage four stomach cancer. After a legal fight, she proved her illnesses were caused by the toxic air and she received a settlement from the 9/11 Victim’s Compensation Fund.
There are more than 43,000 people who were in the vicinity of Ground Zero after the attacks, including emergency personnel, who reported 9/11-related illnesses and 3000 have died with 68 different types of cancers linked to the gases.
Margulis has been cancer free for a number of years now but still has ongoing health issues as a result. She speaks about that day back in 2001 so that “hidden” victims, including the families and friends of those who died, will not be forgotten.
“I find carrying hatred achieves nothing. I feel really sad, sadness for all the people this has affected and all the families and friends and survivors,” she said.
Source: The Daily Telegraph.