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Neil D. Levin Missing in WTC Attack

Neil D. Levin, executive director of the Port of New York and New Jersey, has been listed as unaccounted for in the destruction of the World Trade Center towers in New York on September 11. Mr. Levin is one of 74 persons from the Port Authority who are missing and presumed or confirmed dead. Thirty-seven of these were police officers and 37 were civilians.

Also listed as missing are Daniel Bergstein, secretary of the Port Authority; Port Authority Police Superintendent Fred Morrone, Chief James Romito, Inspector Anthony Infante, and Capt. Kathy Mazza.

Ronald Shiftan, who was deputy executive director under Mr. Levin, is acting executive director, and no further plans have been made for this office, according to the port authority press office.

On September 20, the Port Authority Board of Commissioners approved a resolution declaring that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey “remains strong and more determined than ever,” and pledging to use the full resources of the regional organization to restore damage done by last week’s terrorist attacks and to meet the region’s present and future transportation needs.

“Governor Pataki and Acting Governor DiFrancesco have given us a clear mandate,” said Chairman Lewis M. Eisenberg. “The Port Authority’s financial resources and expertise are undiminished, and its role as a regional economic engine has become more important than ever. The Port Authority must play a vital role in the days ahead. Staff is directed to use every resource at their disposal to play that role in both New York and New Jersey.

“We are unbowed,” said Chairman Eisenberg. “We emerged from the catastrophe of September 11 with our will and our resources strong and intact, and we are more determined than ever. Cherished friends and colleagues are missing, including Executive Director Neil D. Levin, and we still pray for good news. But, in the spirit of the many heroes from the Port Authority and countless other organizations, we will continue to work around the clock to give residents of the region the transportation network they need and deserve. The board and I extend our deep admiration to port authority staff for their dedication in the face of this catastrophe. And we extend special sympathy to port authority police, who lost so many members in their efforts to rescue members of the public.”

“Executive Director Levin was a man of extraordinary ability and commitment to public service, who in a few short months infused the port authority with his vision and energy. On a personal level, I have known Neil for many years. I am proud to call him a friend. He is a person of accomplishments and potential that very few can match.

“We will grieve for Neil, for other port authority colleagues – both civilian employees and the men and women of the Port Authority Police Department, which has shown such dedication and heroism – and for the thousands of others who are missing. We will comfort and care for the families of those who are unaccounted for.

The board, at the direction of Governor Pataki and Acting Governor DiFrancesco, approved a resolution directing staff “to work with other transportation agencies throughout the bistate region to see that emergency transportation needs are met, that all possible steps are taken to ease and address the congestion and delays resulting from the World Trade Center catastrophe, and that transportation services are restored to normal as quickly as possible.”

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