Durham first responders hold recruitment event on 20th anniversary of Sept. 11 attacks

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Durham police ran drills at the Southpoint mall Saturday to show the public what it takes to become a police officer.

It was part of a first responder recruitment event with several other agencies. The event was held on Sept. 11, a day most first responders will never forget.

Capt. Henry Burwell of the Durham Police Department is from New York and worked in the mailroom of World Trade Center Tower 2 as a teen. Burwell’s mom worked in the city on the day of the attacks.

“With my mom working downtown at the time I worried about her and that was the first call that I made to see if she was ok and luckily she was,” said Burwell, who is with the Durham Police Department Training Division.

Burwell said it’s an honor to now work in the law enforcement field and have a direct hand in preventing harm in Durham.

“That is our main focus, that is what we are here to do to help people. We have remained vigilant to prevent terror attacks from happening in our community and across the rest of the country,” said Burwell.

Capt. Mark Urbano, also from New York, has been with the Durham Fire Department for more than 20 years. He said the days following Sept. 11, 2001, caused him to be even more alert on the job.

“It kind of hits home. We train hard knowing that when that call comes we need to be prepared,” said Urbano.

Both men said they hope something so tragic never happens again, but that they hope it encourages more people to play a role in keeping the community protected.

Click on the following links for more information on joining a Durham law enforcement or fire department.

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