At Ground Zero, A City Weeps

At Ground Zero, A City Weeps

 At Ground Zero, a city weeps
Charles Margiotta, a recent stroke victim, courageously reads the name of his 'beautiful, beautiful son'
Sunday, September 12, 2004
The worst part about the mild stroke and temporary speech loss that Charles V. Margiotta suffered last week was the sudden possibility he would not be able to read his firefighter son's name as planned, loudly and clearly before a crowd of thousands at the spot where his son lost his life one September morning three years ago.

But yesterday morning, after ably reading the names of 14 victims of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, Margiotta spoke fluently over the soft accompaniment of a string ensemble and concluded into the microphone, "And my beautiful, beautiful son, Lieutenant Charles Joseph Margiotta. We love you and miss you. You're still the 'big guy.'"

Lt. Margiotta's brother, Michael Margiotta, clutched a framed photograph in each hand of "Chuck," a Meiers Corners resident who served with Ladder Co. 85 in New Dorp.

"I haven't been back here since 10 days after the attack," he said, adding that he made his second visit yesterday because of the importance of the reading to his father. "He wanted this more than anything."

 Heidi J. Shrager / Staten Island Advance