Disney honors 9/11 victims and first responders on 20th anniversary


Twenty years ago unimaginable tragedies occurred in New York City, Washington DC and Pennsylvania. September 11 changed the way people saw the world and their everyday lives. Everyday people have become heroes and breathed a courage that will live on. Each year we stop to remember the lives lost, the families left behind and the heroes who sacrificed everything.

Credit: Disney

On the twentieth anniversary of September 11, Disney Executive Chairman Bob Iger honored those who were lost on that fateful day, as well as the first responders who rushed into the fray to save who they could without thinking twice.

Today we remember all those who tragically lost their lives on September 11. We also pay tribute to the courageous first responders who rushed to help those in need and our courageous military personnel who, in the wake of September 11, served and sacrificed so much in the defense of our nation.

Iger’s tweet wasn’t the only way Disney honored those on the front lines on 9/11.

To celebrate Walt Disney World’s 50th anniversary, Disney sought out Magic Makers, the people who really make a difference in their communities. And Disney recently honored their newest Magic Maker, Rob Vickers – a man who was a first responder at Ground Zero at the World Trade Center.

Creator of magic
Credit: Disney

The Disney Parks Blog shared more about Rob’s story, as well as Disney honoring him as one of their elite magic makers.

Rob joined the Army National Guard in 2000 and a year later served as the 9/11 first responder at Ground Zero. Saturday, September 8e, he was in New York, traveling with a religious group and has photos of the top of the South Tower of the World Trade Center. When the unthinkable events unfolded on Tuesday morning 20 years ago, he was called in to help at the scene. Subsequently, Rob joined the Air Force and continued to serve in Iraq and, after 14 years of combined service, retired medically in 2010.

Magic Maker Rob Vickers
Credit: Disney

Not only did Rob fight overseas for the United States, he also worked hard at home to help injured veterans and created Emerald Coast Wounded Warriors:

In 2012, Rob and a friend started Emerald Coast Wounded Warriors, defending and helping many local wounded veterans and their families, including those of other 9/11 first responders. As a result, many of the warriors for whom Rob champions have received free homes, assistance dogs, emergency mental health care, financial assistance, and spaces to safely interact with – a critical need for veterans. living isolated during the pandemic. “Helping others is very therapeutic for me,” Rob says of the work he does with the organization.

Wounded Warriors of the Emerald Coast
Credit: Emerald Coast Wounded Warriors Facebook

Disney celebrated Rob as a magician by sending him to Walt Disney World Resort and honored him with a flag ceremony. You can watch the beautiful ceremony shared by the Disney parks below.


Yesterday Rob Vickers, #Veteran and First Responder of 9/11, was honored at a #FlagRetreat 🇺🇸 #WeRemember #NeverForget #Disney #DisneyWorld ceremony

♬ original sound – Disney Parks

Nominations for other Disney Magic Makers are accepted until October 1, when Disney World’s 50th anniversary kicks off. If you know someone you would like to name as Magic Maker, you can click here and visit the Magic Makers website. Former Magic Makers include a teenager working as a veterinary technician helping local animals, and two women working together to ensure their community receives their COVID-19 vaccines.

Please join us in commemorating the victims of 9/11 and their families, as well as in honoring first responders like Rob Vickers.


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