Some companies in the South Tower, including financial services firm Morgan Stanley, initiated their own emergency evacuation plans. Morgan Stanley was the largest World Trade Center tenant, occupying 21 floors in the South Tower. Its 3,700 employees in the South Tower and 5 World Trade Center were drilled for emergencies by the firm’s vice president of security, Richard Cyril Rescorla
, a retired U.S. Army colonel. All but eight Morgan Stanley employees and five of its contractors survived the attack.
On 9/11, Rescorla, his deputy Wesley Mercer
, and security staff Godwin Forde
and Jorge Velazquez
reportedly went back upstairs to check the offices again after almost all of the firm’s employees and visitors had safely reached the ground-floor lobby.