9/11 hero’s husband returns ‘Woman of the Year’ award to Glamour because Caitlyn Jenner also got one

Caitlyn Jenner

Moira Smith was a 9/11 first-responder who rescued dozens of people from the North Tower before dying when the South Tower collapsed. She was given one of Glamour magazine’s “Woman of the Year” awards for 2001…but, now, her husband has returned Glamour‘s award, and done so with fervor. Why? According to James Smith’s open letter, he is offended by the magazine’s decision to grant Caitlyn Jenner the Hero award for 2015.

Smith, 38, was one of 23 New York City police officers–and the only woman–who died on September 11th, 2001. She helped pull approximately 100 people from the rubble after the North Tower was struck; you can see a photo of Smith helping a bloodied man on 9/11 here.

In light of Smith’s extraordinary sacrifice, Glamour awarded her with one of its “Woman of the Year” trophies, which Moira’s husband James Smith accepted in her honor. However, last week, James reportedly shipped the “Hero” award back to Glamour‘s office, along with an open letter later published elsewhere, in protest of the magazine’s selection of Caitlyn Jenner as its Hero for 2015.

Smith decided to emphasize his point by using Jenner’s pre-transition name in his letter: “I was shocked and saddened to learn that Glamour has just named Bruce Jenner ‘Woman of the Year,'” he wrote. “Was there no woman in America, or the rest of the world, more deserving than this man?

“I can only guess that this was a publicity stunt meant to resuscitate a dying medium,” Smith continued. “After discussing this slap in the face to the memory of our Hero with my family, I have decided to return Moira’s award to Glamour magazine.”

Glamour handed out its awards in a Carnegie Hall ceremony last week, and uploaded a clip of Caitlyn Jenner discussing her award to its Instagram page shortly after:

After learning of James Smith’s decision, the magazine stood by its own: “We were proud to honor [Moira Smith] in 2001, and we stand by our decision to honor Caitlyn Jenner,” said a Glamour spokeswoman. “Glamour’s Women of the Year Awards recognize women with a variety of backgrounds and experiences.”

This isn’t the first time that Caitlyn Jenner has been at the center of controversy over an award for heroism. Earlier this year, critics accused ESPN of trying to drive up ratings when it gave Caitlyn the ESPY Award for Courage.

Caitlyn has not offered a comment on the Glamour controversy.  


(Photo credits: 9/11 lights, WTC outline via Flickr; Caitlyn Jenner via Twitter)

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  • savannah

    I’m sure his wife would be proud to see her husband acting like a little transphobic crybaby. I don’t particularly like Bruce or Caitlyn, but this man is stupid.

    • TA

      I agree that the husband may have some issue with a transgendered woman receiving the award based on some of the quotes, and that’s disappointing.
      But look at the bigger picture and compare the two women, what they’ve done with their lives. One of them is a hero and one is Caitlyn Jenner.

      • YourMom

        One is a hero, the other is confused Bruce Jenner.

      • savannah

        It seems like glamour was trying to jump on the Caitlyn bandwagon lol

  • aimsless

    What has “she” done, other than put on a dress? She has been living as a woman full time for a split second but let us reward her on the same level as those who risked, and lost, their lives to save others.

    • Ash

      She also killed somebody less than a year ago!

  • Ali.P

    While I don’t like the phobic tone I completely agree and understand why it took from the value of his wife’s award. Jenner is no hero. Not even close. I am glad for every transgendered human out there that it is becoming more acceptable. I can’t imagine feeling trapped in the wrong body. However, a hero is becoming a very loose and meaningless word. How the actual hell is Jenner a hero? As he said, out of every woman in the world, teacher, cop, volunteer for the hundreds of children’s charities or causes, Jenner won? It’s absolute bull. And it was just a publicity move on the magazines part.

    • correct

      Trangender, not transgendered.

  • miranda

    can’t blame him. Caitlyn has literally done nothing other than put on makeup and a dress. The amount of other deserving women, those saving lifes, doctors, volunteers, there are so many other women. He’s right it is 100% a publicity stunt. Caitlyn’s idea of what being a women means is so incredibly warped. We should be ignoring her not throwing accolades at her.

  • Wtf

    Sorry, but there is no comparison between Bruce/Caitlyn and this man’s wife. She gave her life to rescue people in America’s darkest hour. Bruce/Caitlyn sat by for years and allowed his wife to turn their daughters into monsters. Whatever you believe about Bruce’s transition, he has never sacrificed something for the good of someone else. That’s the true mark of a hero, and sorry, but he/she does not have it. Just because he became a woman doesn’t change his character and suddenly make him someone of great honor who deserves an award like this. Giving back the award was probably a little much, but I definitely understand this man seeing it as a slap in the face to his wife and her sacrifice.

  • Brandy

    Bruce or Caitlin however you want to refer to him is not a hero! I don’t blame her husband foe sending it back.

  • TA

    I agree with some others-Jenner isn’t a hero. She has money and was able to hide away while making this transition, and has not faced the rejection and pain many others who choose to live as their authentic self have had to face.
    She’s been a woman to the world for less than a year, and wasn’t deserving of that award.
    When Jenner starts doing some good in this world, I think people will be a lot more accepting of awards such as these. But all she’s fine thus far is make money from a reality TV show. She has only helped herself, and nobody else, that’s not a hero.

  • cookie

    I agree with James Smith 100%! So glad he gave that award back! It became worthless after bruce jenner was given one for wearing a dress and makeup!

  • twelfthnight

    I still stand with my original feelings on this matter — Caitlyn is brave for coming out publicly. But so is any other trans person. She could have dropped out of the spotlight decades ago and transitioned fairly quietly. But she didn’t.

    She is not a hero. She’s not donating time, money, or mentoring trans youth. If coming out is the most heroic thing you’ve done, bravo for you, but you’re not a hero.

    • DZBabe

      I agree with everything you stated. Caitlyn has done nothing to help the trans community. All she has been doing is partying and acting like a Kartrashian.

    • violet Beuregarde

      Especially now that she’s announced she’s voting republican, the party that largely sees people like her as sub-human and seethes at the fact that they have the mere right to pee in a toilet like they themselves do and work every day to get those rights taken away. But of course they’re major advocates of cutting social programs and giving tax breaks for rich people like her, so she suddenly doesn’t give a crap about that little community or anyone in it that’s been giving her awards, praise and speech money for the last several months. How quickly we show our true colors when it comes to $$$.

      • twelfthnight

        She still acts as if she has the white male privilege that she has had all her life. She doesn’t seem to realize that if you’re a woman, you’re a woman. You don’t get the perks of being a man, too.

        She never has to worry about which bathroom to use, because considering she’s a celebrity, most places will let her do whatever she wants anyway, or let her use a special bathroom not for use by the public.

        Caitlyn is probably the most privileged, exception-to-the-rule trans person that lives in America today. While the rest are struggling to be able to play on sports teams and use the washroom, she’s in her private jet throwing her money everywhere. Being trans is merely a physical inconvenience for her, she doesn’t have to live the way other trans people do.

        It’s sick she’ll vote republican and even sicker that she can be a woman without ever experiencing how badly republicans treat women.

  • Noelle Polisso

    Jenner did nothing to deserve an award.Nothing. An he is a he.

    • goodjob

      And there is why she deserves it.

      • Noelle Polisso

        That makes no sense!

  • September24

    Too soon to give Caitlin an award. Let her live as a woman for a few years. What if she changes her mind?

    • statistics

      Yeah. I hear that people come out trans and change their minds all the time. Especially the ones who started hormones in the 80’s. They definitely change their minds. Happens all the time. For sure.

  • amanda

    Bruce doesn’t deserve any awards and neither does his alter ego caitlyn. Especially the woman of the year award. If they want to give the award to a transgendered person, I’m sure there are WAY more deserving people to give that award to than bruce.

    Bruce acts like he’s the only transgender person to come out, and it’s wrong to give him all this attention and give him awards for, in my opinion, only playing dress up. Bruce is probably just a transvestite playing dress up with kris’s clothes and likes the way he looks in them…

    Long story short, if you want to be recognized as a hero, do something selfless and courageous instead of partying and doing nothing but cheesing for the camera bruce!