Roy Chelsen has died of cancer at age 51.
Chelsen, a New York City firefighter, rushed into the north tower of the World Trade Center after the south tower collapsed. He told firefighters inside to get out. Many of them did.
“We ran out of the north tower because of him,” his friend and fellow firefighter Kevin Murray told the New York Daily News. “He ran back through all the jumpers to grab us and rush us out.” (A Time photo essay of another firefighter credited Chelsen for saving his life)
He needed a bone marrow transplant and his friends organized a drive on Facebook to find a match.
A few weeks before Christmas, he got his marrow transplant:
Last fall, Chelsen helped make a video to help promote a bone marrow registry drive in Minnesota:
After the towers collapsed, Chelsen spent weeks sifting through the wreckage. His friends say that’s what caused the cancer that killed him last night.