A woman joining the New York City Police Department is carrying on the legacy of her police officer father who lost his life during rescue efforts at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.
Last week, Jillian Suarez, 25, took the Oath of Honor at the Police Academy beside 270 recruits. Her father, Officer Ramon Suarez, 45, was last seen on 9/11 re-entering the North Tower after he helped several people to safety.
"He would be so totally proud of her," Jillian's mother Carmen Suarez, 58, told ABC News of her late husband. "I know that right now he's beaming with pride. He always knew that she was going to be someone...we miss him very much."
Jillian Suarez holds a degree from St. John’s University and has a passion for forensic science. She hopes to carry her father’s shield upon graduating from the Police Academy, according to a press release issued on Monday, April 30th, by the NYPD.
“I grew up with my father walking in and out of the house with his uniform constantly on and I always admired him for that…he truly loved his job,” Jillian Suarez said in the release.
"I'm very proud of her that she chose to follow in her dad's footsteps,” Suarez, Jillian’s mother, told ABC News. “It's very emotional and bittersweet because her father is not here to see what they always talked about. It's scary at the same time seeing everything that's going on in the police force, but I know that God will watch over her and protect her."