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Bill Capo / Eyewitness News
Email: bcapo@wwltv.com | Twitter: @billcapo

NEWORLEANS-- At the National World War II Museum's tribute to the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attack, retired New York State Court Officer Capt. Patty Mack rang the museum's liberty bell.

'I was thinking about my boss, Capt. William Perry Thompson, the one I have his picture in my hat,' she said. 'I was thinking of him. And everything I do on this day, sorry, it just helps me to honor their memories.'

Three court officers, all Patty's friends, died that day.

'We just went to help, and we ran down and we ended up at the South Tower, and when we got there, it was bedlam, it was surreal, I can't even describe it. People came down wet with jet fuel, and injured, bleeding some.'

Patty Mack keeps a picture that was taken of her in the middle of the disaster, and then the towers began to collapse.

'The ground shook, and you just knew you were in life threatening danger, and you had to get out of there.'

They ran into the South Tower, which Patty says saved their lives.

'We ran together in further, and when the building actually fell, we were thrown, the two of us, and landed in a stairwell, a pocket of safety.'

'When 30,000 people were running away, she ran in,' said her husband Tim, in admiration.

'We came down after Katrina,' Patty said, talking about moving to New Orleans, 'and we had sort of an initial sympathy, if you will, for rebuilding New Orleans and rebuilding New York City.'

Patty Mack and her husband are delighted to be residents of New Orleans now. But every day, while we think of Katrina, she never forgets 9/11.

'You don't forget where you were, what you did, and how important life is, and how important freedom is.'

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