Tunnel to Towers Foundation

Tunnel to Towers 5k

By Meaghan Goepferich Posted on June 26, 2023

The Tunnel to Towers Foundation, established in memory of  fallen 9/11 firefighter Stephen Siller, whose mission is to honor and support first responders and military, is partnering with the City of Clearwater to host a 5K run and walk at 7:00 am on Saturday, July 1, 2023.

Registration is open until Race Time for the Saturday, July 1, 2023 Tunnel to Towers Foundation Clearwater 5k Run and Walk

Nearly 600 people are expected to participate, up to 100 of them will be uniformed firefighters, police officers and military service members.

The event will be the first race in newly renovated Coachman Park and will be part of the weekend-long celebration of the grand re-opening of the park. The event will honor and celebrate Tampa Bay Area first responders—fire, police, EMTs, paramedics, dispatch—as well as military service heroes who serve, sacrifice and protect us every day.

Registration for the Clearwater 5K Run & Walk is open. Participants may register online up until race time as follows:


Registered walkers and runners will have the opportunity to create their own profile pages that will feature their personal photos and individual stories. Additionally, participants can compete to raise the most funds and recruit the most friends to their team.  

The Clearwater 5K Run & Walk will start with a Color Guard Processional, a live performance of the National Anthem, several distinguished military and first responder and Tunnel to Towers program recipient guest speakers followed by a bagpiper leading the first responders and military and then the general public to the start line to begin the race. Vendors, exhibits, music, entertainment and free food will be in place before, during and after the race. 

The Clearwater 5K Run & Walk is among more than 80 events in a national series of 5Ks and tower climbs held all around the United States in support of the Tunnel to Towers Foundation. This event is one of four Tunnel to Towers fundraising events held in the Tampa Bay Area. Of particular interest with all our events is that the first responders and military heroes participate while wearing their full gear which weighs up to 60 pounds for the firefighters.

Tunnel to Towers is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing services for our nation’s first responders and military. Through its Smart Home Program, hundreds of customized high-tech “smart homes” have been built throughout the country, including several in Tampa Bay, for catastrophically injured service members. These homes, created primarily for those who are now triple-and quadruple-amputees or paraplegic, largely as a result of IED explosions, have specialized features controlled with i-Pads to allow these heroes to lead as independent lives as possible.

Through its Fallen First Responder Home Program, the Foundation pays off the mortgages for the families of law enforcement officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty who leave behind young children. The Foundation’s goal is to ensure stability and security to these families facing sudden tragic loss. Through its Gold Star Family Home Program, the Foundation honors the legacy of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice while serving our country by providing the surviving spouses and young children with mortgage-free homes. 

Tunnel to Towers recently announced the launch of a national campaign aimed to eradicate homelessness by providing tiny, comfort homes to veterans who are homeless across all 50 states. Tunnel to Towers is providing housing to more than 500 homeless veterans by the end of 2023 including in Manatee County, Florida.

Of special note for Tampa Bay, Tunnel to Towers is in the process of constructing a 96-home “LET US DO GOOD VILLAGE” in Land O’ Lakes, FL. The mortgage-free homes are for the Foundation’s program recipients and will include resort-style amenities. This is a one of a kind endeavor unlike anything ever constructed in the U.S. to date.

About Stephen Siller/The Tunnel to Towers Foundation:

Tunnel to Towers is dedicated to the memory of FDNY hero and father of fiveStephen Siller, who lost his life on 9/11. Stephen, who was off-duty having just finished his 24 hour shift when the first plane hit, drove to his Brooklyn firehouse and retrieved over 60 pounds of his gear, then sought the quickest route to the World Trade Center. Finding the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel already blocked for security, in a supreme act of heroism, Stephen ditched his truck and ran about three miles with that gear to the Twin Towers where he caught up with his team who all lost their lives while saving others.

Stephen’s six much-older brothers and sisters, who had raised him after Stephen was orphaned at age 10, subsequently established the Tunnel to Towers Foundation in his honor. Its signature event is its Annual Tunnel to Towers 5K Run & Walk held in New York City on the last Sunday in September. The event, which draws 25,000 participants from all over the world, follows in Stephen’s heroic footsteps on 9/11.

For more information on The Tunnel to Towers Foundation and the Clearwater 5K Run & Walk, please visit https://t2t.org/.



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