Like so many others, September 11, 2001 left a void in Laurie Rudnick’s family with the loss of her beloved cousins, FDNY firefighter John Vigiano II and NYPD Detective Joseph Vigiano, who were like brothers to her. Every holiday, birthday, and Sunday dinner to follow would serve as a reminder of their absence and the familiar feeling that something – or someone – was missing.

In the following years, Laurie would see television coverage of the Tunnel to Towers NYC 5K Run & Walk every September, eventually deciding to follow Tunnel to Towers on social media and keep up with the foundation’s mission to do good. In 2013, Laurie was able to participate in the NYC 5K for the first time, walking in Stephen Siller’s footsteps, overwhelmed by the feeling in the air as she emerged from the tunnel. From that day on, Laurie was hooked.

For ten years now, Laurie has joined the Tunnel to Towers Foundation at the annual New York City 5K, decked out in red, white, and blue as part of Team Vigiano in honor of her cousins, with the promise to never forget the tragedy that was 9/11. In fact, Laurie has made it her mission to ensure that Team Vigiano is represented every year. Whether they are contributing to meeting her fundraising goals, cheering her on from the sidelines or walking by her side as she crosses the finish line, friends and family accompany Laurie every year in her quest to make a difference, ending the day at the 9/11 memorial to pay respects to the lives we lost on that fateful day.

The Tunnel to Towers Foundation would like to thank Laurie, her family and friends for the decade of support that has inspired so many to join in on our mission to Do Good and Never Forget.