Ray Kelly praises ‘phenomenal’ transformation of Lower Manhattan after 9/11


♪♪ STEVE: WELL, YOU’RE LOOKING LIVE FROM WHAT USED TO BE KNOWN AS THE GROUND ZERO AREA UP AT THE 1776-FOOT FREEDOM TOWER IN LOWER MANHATTAN. THE COMMEMORATION OF THE SEPTEMBER 11th ATTACKS WILL START VERY SHORTLY. THE FAMILY OF MEMBERS, OF THE VICTIMS HAVE BEEN ASSEMBLING AND ALONG WITH THE POLICE AND THE FIRE AND MILITARY. BRIAN: RIGHT. STEVE: JUST AS THEY HAVE FOR 18 YEARS. BRIAN: JOINING US IN DOWNTOWN NEW YORK CITY WHERE WE’RE LOOKING JUST BELOW, FORMER NYPD COMMISSIONER RAY KELLY HIMSELF LIVE AT THE FREEDOM TOWER AHEAD OF THIS CEREMONY. MR. COMMISSIONER, 18 YEARS LATER THIS LOOKS SO DRAMATICALLY DIFFERENT WHEN YOU TOOK OVER. CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE TRANSFORMATION?>>YES THE TRANSFORMATION HAS BEEN PHENOMENAL. I LIVE IN THIS NEIGHBORHOOD. SO I HAVE SEEN THE TRANSPORTATION, THE TRANSITION EVERY DAY. OF COURSE THIS IS A CREDIT TO SO MANY PEOPLE. RUDY GIULIANI DID A TERRIFIC JOB IN MARSHALING THE COUNTRY. MIKE BLOOMBERG FOLLOWED HIM. I THINK NEW YORK AND THE COUNTRY REALLY OWES A DEBT OF GRATITUDE TO MAYOR BLOOMBERG, WHO SHEPHERDED SO MUCH OF THIS TRANSFORMATION THAT THEY CAN — ALL OF THE PORT AUTHORITY PERSONNEL, SO MANY THINGS THAT HAPPENED HERE. THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL NEIGHBORHOOD ONCE AGAIN. EVERYTHING THEY HAVE DONE HERE, THEY HAVE DONE IN A FIRST CLASS MANNER. AND IT IS A GREAT PLACE TO LIVE. AINSLEY: SIR, WHAT DOES THIS DAY MEAN TO YOU?>>WELL, THIS DAY, MEANS A LOT. I LIVE HERE. I WALK THROUGH THE MEMORIAL WITH GREAT FREQUENCY. EVERY TIME I DO THAT, YOU HAVE TO THINK OF THE, WHAT IS 2799 PEOPLE WHO WERE KILLED HERE BUT ALSO 241 MEMBERS OF THE NEW YORK CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT WHO HAVE LOST THEIR LIVES SINCE THEN AS A RESULT OF INGUESSING TOXIC MATERIALS AND HUNDREDS OF FIREFIGHTERS AND CONSTRUCTION WORKERS AS WELL. THESE PREMATURE DEATHS UNFORTUNATELY ARE GOING TO CONTINUE. SO THE TRAGIC PART OF THIS TERRIBLE EVENT CONTINUES IN THE LIVES OF THESE FOLKS WHO WERE HERE ON 9/11. EXCOMMISSIONER, NOT ONLY WERE YOU BRAVE FOR THE NYPD, WHAT YOU DID TO STOP THE NEXT TERRORIST ATTACK IS LEGENDARY, SENDING YOUR MEN OVER TO SEE THE ATTACKS OVERSEAS, TO STOP THE NEXT ONE THAT WAS COLLING OUR WAY. A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE UNDER THE IMPRESSION AFTER 9/11 THERE WERE NO MORE ATTEMPTED ATTACKS. THAT IS JUST NOT THE CASE, CORRECT?>>ABSOLUTELY. THERE WERE THREATS AND PLOTS AGAINST THIS CITY. THERE WERE 16 DIRECT PLOTS THAT, THANK GOD WERE THWARTED. THERE HAVE BEEN HUNDREDS OF PLOTS ACTUALLY THROUGHOUT THE COUNTRY, TO ATTACK US AND KILL AMERICANS BUT THE FBI HAS DONE A TREMENDOUS JOB IN ROLLING THEM UP. WE HAVEN’T HAD A PLOT, WE HAVEN’T HAD AN ATTACK BY

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