How brother of a 9/11 firefighter is helping house West L.A. homeless veterans

With its donations swelling, a charity formed by the older brother of a firefighter who died in the 9/11 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center was ready to up its game.

Its mission of paying the mortgages of fallen first-responders’ families and building housing for critically injured veterans was no longer enough, Tunnel to Towers founder Frank Siller decided.

“We must expand our mission to eradicate homelessness among our veterans nationwide,” Siller told his board late last year.

That goal has brought the New York-based nonprofit to Los Angeles, where it is making a key contribution to expedite the agonizingly slow redevelopment of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ West Los Angeles campus into a community for 3,000 veterans.

An undisclosed grant from Tunnel to Towers will fill a multimillion-dollar gap in the financing for construction expected to continue over the next decade to build at least 1,700 units of housing for homeless veterans.

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