January 9, Jon Stewart joined the Mayor of New York in a ceremony that presented the key to the city to 9/11 first responder, Ray Pfeifer.
Pfeifer and Stewart both spent this past year fighting for a bill that means so much to many. These two worked side by side to get Congress to pass the Zadroga Bill providing health care to 9/11 first responders, survivors and recovery workers. While Pfeifer himself has stage four cancer, he realizes that he is not alone, with so many of the other first responders either ill or deceased from toxins at ground zero.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio honored Pfeifer with a key to New York for all he has done to help ensure that these first responders receive proper health care. De Blasio said it best.
Pfeifer is truly a humble man. While receiving this honor, he made time to thank everyone around him.
I had so much help; the fire department’s been above and beyond, the doctors, the nurses. That 72,000 people are in this program now, 72,000 people have health care that’s deserving. Everyone in this room somehow touched me, and I feel it. I think that’s why I’m so strong today.
It’s just like Stewart to crack a joke here and there, so it was no surprise that he threw one in while presenting. Stewart had spent years getting to know Pfeifer and knew the dedication he had to this cause, so while he threw in some humor, it was obvious that he was completely genuine.
The key to the city, it’s a symbol of trust. I think if you gave it to me, you’d go to sleep, I’d steal the Chrysler Building. But Ray, you come back in the next morning, everything is where you left it, the dishes are done, the streets are plowed. He’s the best. He is a great example to all of us about how to live our lives with grace and selflessness.
The Zadroga Act will help thousands who are suffering after risking their lives that frightful day, who jumped in and didn’t get a chance to think about themselves because they were selflessly thinking about the well-being of others. Thanks to Pfeifer and Stewart, these heroes have access to necessary medical attention that was almost denied by Congress.
Watch small clip of Stewart below:
— FDNY (@FDNY) January 9, 2016
Featured image via video screenshot