VIDEO: Union County Sheriff’s Deputy Chris Castrogiovanni, a former NYPD officer, was at the scene of 9/11.
“I had been looking at those buildings my whole life so to see what happened was just, it’s so surreal,” Castrogiovanni said.
Castrogiovanni worked in and around Ground Zero for about seven weeks and then again during the holiday season that year.
“New Year’s Eve, we found six firefighters where the Marriot was, and one of them was a guy I went to high school with,” Castrogiovanni told Channel 9. “That was the last time I was down there.”
Castrogiovanni is active but later noticed issues with his breathing and got pneumonia twice. He was diagnosed with Barrett’s esophagus and lung nodules, among other conditions, as a result of his exposure to toxins at the site.
That’s put him and fellow 9/11 first responders and survivors, many who live in the Charlotte area, at risk for COVID-19 complications.