Tom Cruise, the well-known actor, has consistently pledged his support to the many rescue workers who are suffering the effects of the toxic assault on the nervous system, and lungs associated with the cleanup of Ground Zero as a result of the aftermath of the terrorist attack on September 11 on the World Trade Center.
Cruise, working with many of the doctors involved in the project, and along with firefigher Joe Higgins, opened a facility in New York that utilizes one of the only treatments that has had a positive effect on these victims that is helping to restore them to their former lifestyle. It is a treatment devised by L. Ron Hubbard and described in the book Clean Body, Clear Mind. The treatment consists of a medically monitored regimen of exercise, sauna sweat-out, vitamins and minerals, and heavy doses of Niacin, to cleanse the body of toxic residues and a heart healthy diet.
Tom Cruise cuts the ribbon to officially open the Long Island facility of the New York Rescue Workers Detoxification Project, in Williston Park. With him is co-founder Joe Higgins, Williston Park Mayor Doreen Ehrbar, representing New York State Senator Michael Balboni, Rose Walker, Councilwoman for the Town of Oyster Bay; Dr. Steven Larger, who will run the Williston Park facility; New York City Councilwoman Margarita Lopez and Battalion Chief Jim Gormley.
Many of the rescue workers who were able to attend the New York facility felt it was helping them with such positive results, but according to Higgins, so many of their comrades were unable to travel to New York from their homes on Long Island. Actually, 40 percent of all the rescue workers at Ground Zero are from Long Island.
Therefore, Cruise, taking time out of his busy film schedule, hosted a fund-raising benefit at the American Museum of Natural History. The overwhelming generous support of those in attendance raised more than $1.2 million and that will ensure that the facility that has already been established by Cruise and Higgins in the city will continue and that another facility could be opened and run on Long Island.
The Long Island plan was discussed only a few months ago but thanks to the diligence and dedication of Cruise and firefighter Higgins, and the generosity of Astoria Bank and Dr. Steven Larger and his OsteoHealth offices, the facility opened last week in Williston Park with both Cruise and Joe Higgins in attendance to cut the grand-opening ribbon.
Many of the firefighters and rescue workers were on hand at the opening and one after another told their miracle stories about the Detox program.
One young firefighter said he was unable to stop coughing and had what he described as a knot in his chest and he could hardly eat. He said he had shortness of breath and was unable to go up and down stairs. Further, he said he had been active in coaching his young children in both soccer and lacrosse, but since working at Ground Zero he has not been able to deal with any activity let alone coaching his children. He said he was almost an invalid and on top of that he had been given so many steroids to try to alleviate his symptoms that he, in his words, "blew up like a balloon."
The other night at the ribbon-cutting event, that same firefighter was walking around chatting with all his buddies and feeling almost 100 percent. He said he had undergone the detox program for 22 consecutive days and as a result he was feeling so much better and was able to interact with his children and wife, his cough was gone and he was now able to fall asleep at night, not during the day. Many of the stories that night were similar.
Another firefighter said he had been on the job for 20 years. He said he spent six weeks working at Ground Zero, which he said he did not regret for one moment. On September 11 he said he was caught in the toxic dust cloud for more than 11 hours. He said he didn't realize that he was getting sick but was later sent to the hospital and to the hazardous material section to be cleaned and treated.
For the next 31 months he said he has suffered from back pain, loss of physical endurance, tightness in the chest and on top of that he said he was angry and irritable and short tempered with his wife and children. And, he said, he didn't know why. All of these emotions and feelings resulted in his retiring from the job five years before he intended.
On April 21, 2004 he finished the detox program and he said, "I can honestly say that I am 100 percent symptom-free. I can even run for 20 minutes on the treadmill without any tightness in my chest or coughing. Before the program I would get up four to five times in the night and I never had a good rest. After the program was completed I slept like a log."
He continued, "This program has helped me and my family more than anyone could know. I cannot put into words how happy and grateful I am to Tom Cruise and to everyone who helped me get the toxins out of my body. Even the staff at the office are great. Each and every one of them showed an incredible amount of compassion and concern for me and for all the rescue workers."
Other firefighters spoke of kidney failure, swelling of joints with absolutely no strength. One said, "After the program, the little things I took for granted, are now back, especially the fact that I can once again play with my very active 2-year-old."
Dr. David E. Root, MD, MPH, an occupational medicine specialist who serves on the project's advisory board said, "We have now seen hundreds of cases where patients who have not responded to other forms of treatment recovering through this detoxification program."
Dr. Root continued, "Whatever else the public health response to 9/11 might include, this program is essential. We must do much more than simply monitor patients as their health deteriorates. We must also treat them. We will never forget what Tom Cruise is doing for the uniformed officers who serve New York. His commitment to this project and the remarkable results that are being achieved through detoxification are rare bright spots in the aftermath of this horrible tragedy."
The Rescue Workers Detoxification Project is located in the offices of OsteoHealth, run by Dr. Steven Larger. Dr. Larger will oversee the program. The entrance is from the parking lot of the Astoria Bank, corner of Willis Avenue and Hillside Avenue and because it is fully funded, due to the generosity of Cruise, there is no charge for any of the services, which is wonderful for these magnificent dedicated rescue workers.
For further information or for how to be enrolled in the program, either in New York or on Long Island, please call Carol Hamaker at (212) 587-3998.