Akron Police Chaplin reflects on the call for help he received on 9/11

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AKRON-September 11, 2001 touched the lives of people across the world. Akron police Chaplin Bob Denton knows this first hand.

Not only was one of his family members in one of the World Trade Towers on that fateful day, but Denton also received a call asking for his help from the National Organization for Victims Assistance. In the 1970's, Denton was president of the organization and still serves on the board.

He is familiar with dealing with disasters. His work includes aiding victims in 1995, when the Alfred P. Murrah Federal building was bombed in Oklahoma City.

****Remembering 9/11 14 years later****

Denton was asked to aid in the effort to council the hundreds of first responders who were overcome with a multitude of emotions on September 11. One day after the attacks, Denton drove to New Jersey and began to assemble a team of mental health professionals.

"I remember going down and looking at what was left. I remember talking to some of the people there. They had just got off the bus, and watched this thing happen. In their own view they were waiting for the actors and actresses to come out because it was so surreal, it had to be a movie," Denton told FOX 8.

Once the team was assembled in New York they setup in several places. One of those was stationed on Liberty Island, where those in need of help could come. Many health professionals heard horrific stories of incredible sadness.

Denton said, "A firefighter said you can't believe this, we were trying to rescue people. I reached in to try and help one of our fire guys who was underneath a piece of cement. I went to pull him out and all I had was a leg. So the impact of this on professionals who are trained to deal with this....This moved the bar beyond things that we could mentally and emotionally kind of wrap our heads around."

Today, Chaplin Denton believes the need to help victims still exists and it will for years to come.

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