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Woman who lost husband in 9/11 attacks fights for justice

'Tom called right after the plane had hit the building,' victim's wife says
Posted at 10:43 PM, Sep 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-09 11:29:07-04

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Terry Strada said Sept. 11 was like any morning in New York City until she got a call from her husband.

"Tom called right after the plane had hit the building. Tom was in the North Tower on the 104th floor," she said.

At the time of the 9/11 attack, Terry Strada and her husband Tom were living the American dream. Tom was a partner at Cantor Fitzgerald, a financial services firm. And the couple had just brought home their third child, Justin.

Yet, on Sept. 11, 2001, Terry was on the phone with her panic-stricken husband.

"It's a blessing and a curse to have talked to him but to have heard his last words being as desperate and horrifying as it was," she said.

Terry said that day she lost the love of her life, nothing since has soothed the pain.

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"This one is a bit more painful, sad to realize he's been gone for 20 years," she said. That 20 years have passed without him being here, seeing the children and all that we've missed with him."

In the 20 years since the attack, Terry hasn't been sitting idly by. She is the national chair of the 9/11 Families and Survivors United for Justice Against Terrorism Group. And she's heavily involved in a long-running lawsuit against Saudi Arabia.

RELATED: 9/11 attacks: South Florida events, memorials, tributes

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"Of course, this is civil litigation against them so there is a monetary value on the litigation. But, it's not about money in my pocket. It's about taking money out of the pockets of the terrorists. That will give me justice," she said.

During the attacks, nearly three thousand people were killed, including Tom Strada.

So is forgiveness possible?

"I have no forgiveness for them. They have no remorse," she said.

Terry went on to say she's encouraged by a recent move to declassify some documents related to Sept. 11. It's a fight to learn more detail about who was involved in helping carry out the attacks.