Thursday, September 27, 2007

Here's Another Scoop for the New York Times

The Times has a sad story today about a woman who supposedly survived the impact of Flight 175 and escaped the South Tower, but whose fiance died in the North Tower.

As a matter of history, Ms. Head’s account made her one of only 19 survivors who had been at or above the point of impact when the planes hit. As a matter of emotion, her story deeply moved audiences like college students to whom she spoke and visitors at ground zero, where she has long led tours for the Tribute W.T.C. Visitor Center for visitors including Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, former Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and former Gov. George E. Pataki.

“What I witnessed there I will never forget,” she told a gathering at Baruch College at a memorial event in 2006. “It was a lot of death and destruction, but I also saw hope.”

Much of Ms. Head’s account was posted on the Web site of the World Trade Center Survivors’ Network, a nonprofit organization for which she served as president and as point person for corporate donations.

But no part of her story, it turns out, has been verified.

As you can probably guess, it certainly appears at this point that Ms Head was not in the Towers and in fact had no boyfriend who died there.

But this sort of fraud is not unusual. In fact, currently there is a young woman presenting herself as a relative of a victim, and using that status to harass Mayor Giuliani. Sabrina Rivera likes to present herself as a family member, as in this video:

She and her friends use her "family member" status to gain access to Ground Zero during the memorial services, and to deflect criticism of her harassment of Mayor Giuliani:

But, as you can probably guess, she is not in fact a family member. Her ex-boyfriend's father was a fireman who died on 9-11.

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