FCC Fire Cadets raise money for 9/11 trip to New York

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- To mark the passing of 20 years since 9/11, Fresno City College is sending 27 cadets to participate in next week's commemoration ceremony in New York.

But they need your help to make it happen.

It was 20 years ago that class president Scott Jaeckel decided he wanted to be a firefighter.

"Ironically it's 9/11," said Jaeckel. "20 years ago, I was 20 years old when 9/11 happened. I had a kid at the time so military service was out of the question. It took a couple years to decide how I was going to give back to my community."

Inspired by the courage he saw firefighters display that day, it lit a spark that never died.

"You feel helpless when you're 2,000 miles away you want to help and do something," said Jaeckel.

Two decades later, he's finally fulfilling his dream to become a firefighter.

"A lot of people in the fire service will understand that burning desire, it never really goes away," added Jaeckel.

Now at Fresno City College, he and 26 other cadets will travel to New York next week to visit the 9/11 memorial and take part in the commemoration.

"It's really meaningful for me, someone who was alive during that time and getting into the fire service to go back and pay my respects," added Jaeckel.

When they're not in class, the cadets have been working to raise the $30,000 needed for the trip and with takeoff just days away they're still raising funds.

"Even with the pandemic and everything else we thought it was important we keep that relationship and partnership up with the East Coast," said Fire Training Director Peter Cacossa.

All in hopes to honor the brave men who lost their lives that day 20 years ago.

"To be able to have the cadets that weren't alive at that time, to share with them the profession we're getting into and understanding we're all a big family," explained Jaeckel.

To donate, please contact Director Peter Cacossa at peter.cacossa@fresnocitycollege.edu or Cadet Scott Jaeckel at srjaeckel@gmail.com.
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