New York Port Authority officer to donate piece of World Trade Center to Auburn University

Published: November 09, 2015
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Will Jimeno, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department officer, will dedicate a piece of steel from the World Trade Center to the Auburn University Veterans Resource Center on Friday, Nov. 13, at 10:30 a.m. in 217 Foy Hall.

The steel, which was retrieved after the towers collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001, will be permanently displayed at the center. Following the presentation, Jimeno will speak at 1 p.m. in room 113A of Lowder Hall.

"The Auburn University Veterans Resource Center is so grateful Will Jimeno wants to present our own Auburn veterans a piece of steel from ground zero," Robyn Westbrook, center coordinator, said. "Many of our current student veteran population joined the military because of the attacks on 9/11."

One of only 18 survivors of the towers' collapse, Jimeno, whose survival inspired the movie "World Trade Center," will openly share his triumphant story of service, tragedy and survival, and existing in a post-9/11 world.

"Having faith, hope and love are three pillars that will get you through all your challenges in life," said Jimeno.

Before Jimeno arrives, the Veterans Resource Center will be holding events throughout the week of Veterans Day to honor each branch of military service.

Monday through Friday, a service branch song will be played from the Samford Hall clock tower after the Auburn fight song at noon.

On Wednesday, Nov. 11, the center is holding an open house from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. in 217 Foy Hall. All veterans, service members, guardsmen, reservists and family members of someone serving, or who served, have been invited to tour the Veterans Resource Center.

The Auburn Veterans Association will conduct a suicide awareness campaign to bring awareness to the 22 veteran suicides that occur each day. A week-long display will be held on Cater Lawn to give a visual to the 110 veterans that will take their own lives this week.

Concluding the week's events, Jimeno will be honored on Pat Dye Field at Jordan-Hare Stadium Saturday, Nov. 14, at the Auburn versus Georgia football game.

"Having a piece of the World Trade Center steel for the Auburn veterans to touch and remember who they fought for is truly profound," said Westbrook.

To make a donation to the Auburn Veterans Association award fund, go to For more information on the Veterans Resource Center, go to